Careers for the 21st Century: Using Labor Market Information (LMI) to Help Meet the Needs of Career and Technology (CTE) Students

(The Heart of Texas P-20 Council includes representatives from K-12 education, higher education and employers. They meet regularly to help coordinate efforts to launch our young people into productive lives as workers and citizens. This post is one in a monthly series of posts intended to share information about the work of this important group in our community. For more posts in this series, click here: P-20 education.)

by Christine Holecek

What is Labor Market Information (LMI)? Some people believe the LMI is largely made-up information. But it is actually information that is pulled from premier data sites. National data is found at the bureau of labor and statistics State data is found through the Texas Workforce Commission, Tracer 2 website Labor Market Information is broken down in codes. The industry codes are called NAICS, Occupational Codes are called SOC, and Training Codes are referred to as CIP.

NAICS, the North American Industry Classification System, is the standard used by Federal agencies in classifying businesses for collecting, analyzing, and publishing statistical data related to the U.S. business economy. SOC, Standard Occupation Classification – used by Federal agencies to classify workers into occupational categories for collecting, calculating, disseminating data. Workers are classified into one of over 820 occupations. Occupations are combined to form 23 major groups, 96 minor groups, and 449 broad occupations. Each broad occupation includes detailed occupation(s) requiring similar job duties, skills, education, or experience. CIP, Classification of Instructional Programs – used by the National Center for Education Statistics to collect, collate, analyze, and report full and complete statistics on the condition of education. The CIP functions as a taxonomic scheme to support the tracking, assessment, and reporting of fields of study and program completion activity.

pie chart mapWhat does the demand for talent look like in the HOT Workforce Area? Waco is considered the Metropolitan Statistical Area for Heart of Texas (HOT) Workforce Solutions. LMCI analysts and users are particularly interested in K-12 educational programming because it is a pipeline to future employees. A list of targeted occupations can be found at Careers from Aviation to Welding can be found on the targeted occupation list. In demand career clusters include: Transportation, Manufacturing, Health Care, Business, Information Technology, Law and Public Safety. Below is the occupational projections from the Heart of Texas which can be found at


How does LMI meet the need of CTE Students? LMI Matters! It aims to help develop awareness of labor market information (LMI) and to show how it can be used effectively. It is for anyone who is helping adults or young people to explore opportunities for work or further learning. Our K-12 school system is training a future workforce that helps with the recruitment and retention of employers in our region. The HOT P-20 system includes pre-K through career as the pipeline of students that move on to post-secondary after high school graduation. The Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce has identified a talent pool of future employees and encourages training the following targeted industries: Advanced Manufacturing, Aerospace and Defense, Supply Chain Management, Health Care, Professional and Financial Services. Independent School Districts need to focus on the Labor Market Information and the targeted industries to ensure that we prepare our students today for jobs needed by tomorrow’s employers.

Christine HolecekThis Act Locally Waco blog post was written by Christine Holecek. Christine is an Education Specialist at Education Service Center Region 12 in Waco. She has worked in the area of Adult Education and Career & Technical Education for the past 25 years. She earned an AAS degree from MCC, a BAAS and Master’s Degree from the University of North Texas and is currently enrolled in the Doctoral Program in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Tarleton State University.

The Act Locally Waco blog publishes posts with a connection to these aspirations for Waco. If you are interested in writing for the Act Locally Waco Blog, please email [email protected] for more information.

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