As San Antonio continues to grow and attract new industries, the biggest challenge facing local economies is closing the education gap to maintain a qualified workforce.
Creating a 21st-century employment pool ready to meet the needs of the robotics, biotech and information sectors should be a priority.
To do this, businesses and governments must double their efforts to support both bilingual education and science, technology, engineering and math courses.
New foreign trade agreements could favor San Antonio, but the ranks of trained workers imbued with both technical and language skills need to be filled.
Signs are promising. The billion-dollar bioscience field in the Alamo City is flourishing. In addition, Cibolo will be home to an auto-tech company that complements an existing Toyota manufacturing plant. San Antonio also hosts innovative tech incubators.
However, the momentum can’t stop there. Too often San Antonio experiences a “brain drain” as the best and brightest move to Austin, Silicon Valley or other high-tech hubs.
By 2040, the region will see an additional 1 million people. The right jobs, based on the right training, need to be in place well before then.