U.S. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) issued the following statement in response to President Obama's State of the Union Address:
"One of my top priorities in Congress is putting people in Minnesota - and all over America - back to work, and I'm glad the president talked about that. I was proud to bring Larry Lundblad, the president of Central Lakes College, as my guest to tonight's speech. He's a leader in workforce development, and I was very gratified to hear the president talk about filling the skills gap. We need to train people to fill the jobs we already have - jobs that are waiting to be filled, but that just don't have enough applicants with the needed skills."
Sen. Franken was joined at the speech by Dr. Larry Lundblad, the president of Central Lakes College in Brainerd, who is a statewide leader in forging partnerships between schools and businesses to make sure students are prepared to join the workforce.
"I was happy to hear President Obama highlight the need for workforce training in his address tonight," said Central Lakes College President Larry Lundblad. "Higher education can play a huge role in our economic recovery by providing the education and training our workers need to compete in the new economy. I'm thankful to Sen. Franken for inviting Karen and me to the State of the Union."
Sen. Franken also says he will be pursuing legislation on workforce development that will strengthen the relationship between colleges and businesses to help make sure that students get the education they need to fill open jobs.