92% of State Government Jobs in Pennsylvania Now Open to Those Without a Four-Year Degree

Josh ShapiroCredit: Commonwealth Media Services

PENNSYLVANIA — In an effort to make it easier for Pennsylvanians to find good-paying jobs, Governor Josh Shapiro yesterday announced that 92 percent of state government jobs – about 65,000 positions – do not require a four-year college degree. In addition, all state agencies under his jurisdiction have been ordered to take steps to emphasize work experience in their hiring. As part of that order, the Shapiro Administration launched a new website where applicants can easily search among the thousands of open positions that don’t require a four-year degree. That website is now linked from the homepage at www.employment.pa.gov.

Governor Josh Shapiro stated that he is committed to providing every Pennsylvanian with the opportunity to determine and pursue their own pathway in life, no matter the route. This means that those who wish to attend college can do so with the knowledge that their areas of expertise and interests will be valued, equally as much as someone who has chosen an alternate route of gaining experience through work, job training, or apprenticeship programs. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is recognizing skill sets are developed outside of traditional college education, so they want all Pennsylvanians to know they have equal opportunity when it comes to employment opportunities within the state.

Governor Shapiro was joined at Wednesday’s announcement by Lieutenant Governor Austin Davis. Secretary of Administration Neil Weaver, Beth Christian, and Darice Mayhew – the latter two of whom are Commonwealth employees who have worked their way up in government service without a four-year degree.

“As a long-time Commonwealth employee who does not have a four-year degree, Governor Shapiro’s signing of this Executive Order means so much to me, both personally and professionally,” said Acting Deputy Secretary of Administration Beth Christian. “This Executive Order tells current Commonwealth employees and anyone looking to come work for the state of Pennsylvania, we support you, with or without a degree. Thank you, Governor Shapiro for recognizing the importance of this topic and ensuring that removing barriers for state employment is a priority.”

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Getting a four-year college degree is only one path to building skills and expertise in a particular field. According to the Department of Labor & Industry, more than seven million Pennsylvanians do not hold a four-year degree, and millions of Pennsylvanians develop their skills through alternative routes such as two-year degree programs, apprenticeships, military service, job training, and on-the-job experience.

Governor Shapiro has pledged to invest in apprenticeships, vocational training, and career and technical education, saying in his Inaugural Address that “real freedom that comes when we create pathways to new opportunities by investing in vo-tech and job training programs.”

Read Executive Order 2023-03 here.

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