Gov. Scott wants 70 percent of Vermonters credentialed, work-skilled by 2025

You won’t find 70x2025vt on a “Math is Fun” multiplication table, but you will find it on the worktables of the Gov. Phil Scott administration and the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation.

The bold, new education and workforce development program spearheaded by Vermont’s governor and VSAC, along with a group of leaders from the education and business community, has a goal of arming 70 percent of Vermont’s population with either trade or higher education credentials by the year 2025.

Scott’s 70x2025vt is ambitious, but is it doable?

Vermont Gov. Phil Scott

Vermont is sometimes tainted as a high-tax state where wealthy trustfunders live lushly surrounded by pastoral acres and well-groomed ski trails, where family dairy farms are in decline, where untrained handymen barely get by on seasonal jobs, and college-degreed youth flee to find professional work. Hence, there’s more than enough work to do in order to meet the goals of 70x2025vt.

“As part of my ‘cradle to career’ focus on education and training, we owe it to Vermonters to provide the pathways necessary to develop the skills to be successful at work, at home and in the community,” Scott said at a 70x2025vt fall event at PC Construction in South Burlington. “(Our) 70×2025 is a big goal, but one I believe that we can reach by working together and using Vermont’s power of cooperation, collective wisdom and action. My administration is, and will be, fully engaged in this effort.”

According to Scott, construction, trades and allied-health occupations are the employment sectors looking for skilled Vermonters immediately.

Scott has cited research from Georgetown University indicating that seven in 10 of the high-pay, high-demand jobs in the decade of the 2020s will require some level of education and training after high school.

According to Scott Giles, president and CEO of VSAC, where the Governor’s 70x2025vt effort resides, Vermont must drastically upgrade the skills of the population to not only compete regionally and nationally, but globally as well.

“A high school diploma just isn’t enough anymore,” Giles said. “Our attention must be on helping all Vermonters take the steps to better careers and opportunities for themselves and Vermont.  And we know the benefits to Vermont are more than just economic — more education and training leads to more active civic engagement in our local communities.”

The 70x2025vt mission statement illustrates the daunting challenges needed in order to meet the 2025 deadline:

  • Identify and eliminate barriers to postsecondary access and success for youth and adults.
  • Strengthen pathways between education and employment.
  • Change the narrative to ensure public recognition of postsecondary education and college and career readiness as a shared value.
  • Align state policy with the 70×2025 goal.

Just a tad over a month old, 70x2025vt is already out of the gate and on track, at least according to the Scott administration.

“To achieve the Advance Vermont goal, we need to expand Vermont’s college-going culture among both high school students and working adults,” the 70x2025vt website reads. “This will include eliminating current gender and socioeconomic gaps among aspirations to, readiness for, and successful enrollment in, some form of education after high school.”

The devil is in the details and 70x2025vt is backed up by a council of 25 well-respected leaders from around Vermont including employers, educators, civic groups, lawmakers and Scott cabinet members. In addition to the experts, the Scott initiative has received significant support from major statewide education and business organizations.

One such partner is PC Construction, a multi-million dollar commercial and industrial design and building firm founded by Angelo G. Pizzagalli in 1958. The firm is employee-owned, with over 1,000 employee-owners working on jobs from Maine to Florida.

“Like many Vermont employers, PC Construction is hiring for well-paying jobs and we are on the hunt to find the skilled workers to fill them,” said Jay Fayette, PC’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. “As a lifelong Vermonter and graduate of Vermont Technical College, I believe in the excellent schools and training programs our state has to offer. For me, and PC Construction, joining in the 70x2025vt initiative is a no-brainer to make sure that Vermont is developing a talent pool that can meet the demands of our state and global economy.”

Another 70x2025vt partner is the city of St. Albans. Mayor Liz Gamache signed on early to help the Scott administration achieve the goal. She believes the mission will not only help her city but all communities in the Green Mountain State.

“We’re all in this together,” Gamache said. “The state of Vermont succeeds when its towns and cities do. I can tell you my top goal as mayor is to see that our community members have opportunity and that our businesses thrive. It’s spectacularly important to the success of St. Albans.”

Lou Varricchio is a freelance reporter for True North Reports. Send him news tips at

Images courtesy of and Gov. Phil Scott

10 thoughts on “Gov. Scott wants 70 percent of Vermonters credentialed, work-skilled by 2025

  1. Governor Scott , let get them all educated but where are the jobs and who is willing to
    work this day and age ………….think , think ?

    VT is one of the highest taxed states with NO real employment opportunities , I know we
    have a few employers here but the majority ………….. well that ship has sailed !!

    The new batch of little geniuses may be tech savvy when it come to Smart Phones, but
    are they willing to work 40 – 60 hrs a week without being on there phones ???

    Not from what I have seen ………………… shameful !!

  2. This fits with the $15/hour minimum wage push. A much better alternative would be to encourage and support a market approach in wages and make it affordable for companies to train those wanting to gain a skill that once gained will result in truly livable wages. As a bonus these people will not have college or technical school dept, so they will be far ahead of the $15 minimum wage model that undermines the apprenticeship model and feeds the “education” halls created by endebting people who as mentioned in a comment above may very well be getting training (guaranteed to be a less applicable training than an apprenticeship) for a skill that could easily not be in great need when they complete the training and are looking for a job to pay off the debt. It does keep the professional teachers/professors/administrators well paid and it does build fine collections of buildings on these campuses … and often fund some pretty nutty ideas.

  3. Good luck getting the drug addled and welfare addicted slugs off the couch long enough to show up at any training program. As for the rest, they can’t put down their iPhones long enough to figure out which end of a hammer is used to whack a nail.

  4. Vermonters might be rich but they are not very smart. School to work TRAINING instead of real education is how Communist countries educate (train and indoctrinate) their children. So when your child is TRAINED to be a plumber and there are no plumber jobs available what then? In the old world a truly educated person who did not want to go to college got hired at an entry level job and had the ability to be trained to do the required job. If they did well and had a good work ethic they move on in the company. Business now wants the school to train children (human capital) to benefit them and save them the expense of training an employee. Instead they will pick out the kids and assign them a future and train them only on the skills they need to master (have you heard them throw that word around… you know what it means?) their assigned job. When that job no longer exists these future plumbers will have to be retrained (this is what they mean when they say “life long learning”) because they were trained in only a certain set of skills and now have no ability to rester their own ship. This is called the global PLANNED economy and its roots are based in Communism. Did you know every President since Eisenhower has had arrangements with Russia to exchange education policies? Did you know that Mr. Gaither one of the Directors of the Ford Foundation back in the 50’s told Norman Dod of the Reece Commission that tax exempt foundations were directed by the US Government to use their grant making power (Gates, Carnegie, Walton, Broad, Ford, Rockefeller etc etc) to “comfortably mere the US with the Soviet Union. They planned to make it happen through education and this is why these foundations are all invested in education. Gates signed an agreement in 2004 with Communist UNESCO to deliver Universal Education. He is not worried about American children he has a global agenda. To me he is a traitor. So go ahead keep sending your kids to the federal institutions and don’t cry when your kid is dumber than a box of rocks but will be able to unclog a toilet. They plan to determine what every child will do by the 2nd grade. Remember……Arne Duncan came right out and said it “the day will come when we can look at a 2nd grader and tell if they will go to college or not.” I have one thing to say to that idiot. BEN CARSON. Parents are the only people that can save our kids, their future and the future of our country. Don’t do it then when the time comes you can explain to your kids and your grandkids WHY you did nothing. Time for parents to STARVE THE BEAST. Get the kids out and they don’t go back until they end all this craziness. Computers in the schools ARE NOT INNOVATION…..they are experimentation and your kids are the lab rats. They are the data collectors that will help them determine which kids in the future to tag for college and which to tag for plumbing. FYI…..Texas is now going to make WORK a requirement for graduation. EDUCATION IS NOT ABOUT GETTING A JOB. You are being indoctrinated right along with your kids.

  5. As both a homeowner running a renovation project and as a licensed tradesman, I can attest to a shortage of young people willing and qualified to enter the workforce. Talk to any contractor and their number one complaint is that they can’t find skilled people willing to reliably show up and put in a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay. Not to seem like an old grump, but it seems kids think they can skate through school and get a $100K/yr job with a corner office, a Foosball table and a massage therapist as part of the on-site amenities. Sorry, kid- it doesn’t work that way. Your dream job is constantly in jeapardy of being outsourced to whatever country is the new low cost producer. One need only listen to ads on the radio looking for electricians, HVAC tech’s and manufacturing workers with a good skill set to know that we’re in trouble. These are the kind of jobs we need to fill, as they are the backbone of the middle class that pays the bills and gets things done. To ignore this is to allow VT to continue to slip into a two-tier society, those that have and those that don’t.

    • What the kids need is parents that teach them a good work ethic and accountability. If they don’t have that all the training in the world isn’t going to make any difference. Training is the job of employer. To expect school to spit out trained people so you don’t have to do it is NOT what education is about. This equates to the same way they TRAIN kids in Communist countries. We need parents to get back to being parents, schools getting back to what schools are supposed to do and employers doing what they are supposed to do (train your own workers) You will be making money off of them you need to train them. Again, a school training program will do nothing but produce a bunch of adults that are dumber than a box of rocks that will not benefit you in anyway because they will not work hard nor will they show up everyday on time. Everybody is pushing off their responsibility on everyone else. THIS IS NOT THE JOB OF EDUCATION OR THE SCHOOLS. We have the lowest literacy rate in the history of this country and you want the schools to train our kids on how to do construction. What we are reducing these kids to is human capital to serve the need of business and the planned economy.

    • You’re absolutely right Jrzturtl. I’ve seen this as well, from home renovation to other manufacturing projects. The number one complaint from the owners of the business is ‘they can’t find enough young people who’ll show up on time and work a full day’.
      The only way I can get anybody to help with my projects is to work with them, which I don’t mind, but not everybody is in my position.
      Additionally, the State is so lax in what they license, many homeowners have no recourse when a contractor walks off the job and leaves them in the lurch.

  6. This “credentialing” smacks of just more Soviet Style central planning coming from Governor Scott and his liberal minions. The last time I checked the state is nearly broke with budget shortfalls and unfunded liabilities piling up. What state bureaucracy is going to implement this latest and greatest program birthed out of the back end of our general assembly? How much more is this going to cost the already struggling taxpayer?

    • YOU ARE ABSOLUTELY CORRECT. This is what Communist countries do. TRAINED human capital for the planned economy but parents line up like sheep. As long as someone else is doing their job they are happy. It is the job of the parents to build character and work ethic in their children, it is the job of the school to EDUCATE, it is the job of the employer to train their employees. The problem is not skilled workers. The problems is snowflakes that do not want to work. They are used to getting handed stuff without earning anything. So they think they should get paid to do nothing. I saw it first hand. you can train them in school but that will not fix the problem. These kids with no work ethic will still not be of benefit to the employer. Oh and the fact that your state is broke……look up Pay For Success. It was codified into federal law under ESSA. Then you will see how they will again suck cash strapped states into the Pay For Success scheme. I would be happy to send you info on it. Send me a FB PM or an email request.

  7. One of the biggest barriers to employment in Vermont: the bloated welfare rolls. What ever happened to work for welfare? That would be a good follow-up story.

Comments are closed.