CNBC Poll: Does the U.S. Have a Shortage of High-Skilled Workers?

Better Your Business - Advanced Manufacturing
Better Your Business - Advanced Manufacturing

It may be hard to imagine that there would be a shortage of skilled workers in a country that lost some 6 million manufacturing jobs in the past two decades and still has 12.5 million unemployed people.

More than a few CEOs, however, say it's the sad reality because they struggle to find qualified people to hire and, worse, jobs — not just IT programming or engineering ones — go unfilled.

Skeptics say the whining is just a smokescreen for importing less-expensive labor or sending jobs abroad because of an unwillingness to hire unionized labor.

Regardless of the debate, which has been raging for decades, there is agreement that the U.S. needs to refocus its educational resources and goals to increase its competitiveness.

Such a commitment would generate more engineering, computer science and math majors and provide more vocational training for the rapidly evolving trades, the latter of which would service the advanced manufacturing sector.

What do you think?

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Not a Scientific Survey. Results may not total 100% due to rounding.