Missouri Adds Jobs, Institutes More Stringent Assessments

Joplin, Mo., which was devastated by a tornado in 2011, is reorganizing its Public Works department in an overhaul that will ultimately create more jobs in the city.

The employment situation is improving across Missouri, and workers in several different industries are realizing the benefits. From education to information technology to promoting business development, the Show Me State is quickly becoming a hub for employment in the region.

Telecommunications jobs
Anyone who is interested in pursuing a career in information technology in Missouri should be buoyed by a recent announcement from telecommunications giant AT&T. In the coming months, the company will add nearly 200 jobs the almost 11,000 people already working for it in the state, according to St. Louis NBC affiliate KSDK.

As states across the country compete to add technology jobs, this latest development is welcome news in Missouri because it shows that it is making excellent headway in that effort.

Public works jobs
Joplin, one of the biggest cities in the state, recently announced that it would be reshuffling its public works department. The reorganization will have a wide-ranging impact on the city, especially in regard to education. Much of the money that is allocated to the department will go toward various projects at city schools.

One of the most notable initiatives that will fall under the purview of the department is providing mental health services to local students who were affected by the devastating tornado that tore through the town in 2011. That program is credited with helping more than 4,000 students, helping to keep them in regular classes instead of having to seek special services.

New testing for teachers
In another bit of education news in Missouri, the state is introducing a new test for teaching students. Called the Missouri Educator Gateway Assessments, or MEGA, the test will be administered to students who are pursuing a career in teaching in order to ensure they are ready to take over a classroom.

The test measures several types of skills, including general knowledge and specific content related to particular areas of study. One of the most interesting aspects of the test will be the Missouri Educator Profile, which is a personality index intended to assess whether someone is naturally inclined to be a good teacher.

With this test, Missouri is working to ensure that it is a fertile ground for jobs both now and into the foreseeable future.

This article is sponsored by Western Governors University, a nonprofit, accredited, online university. To find out more about WGU's online degree programs, please visit www.wgu.edu/wisecareers.

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