WTS International was among the guests invited to the annual APEC CEO summit in November. APEC (the Asian Pacific Economic Cooperation) held its meeting of the world’s companies that are at the helm of our global economy in Hawaii, but the mood wasn’t very luau-like because several of the sessions presented and concluded that the world’s economy may suffer great consequences due to a shrinking pool of talent.
Who was else was in attendance at this important summit? President Obama, Hilary Clinton, and the CEOs of companies such as FedEx, Boeing, Caterpillar, and DHL were there, and they all heard or aired the same concerns for the world’s future infrastructure. Marcia Ferranto, WTS International’s President and CEO summed up the trouble: “The top-notch talent currently responsible for transportation systems across the globe is retiring, and the quantity of young talent coming up through the STEM educational and training paths (science, technology, engineering, and math) is dwindling.”
WTS International’s invitation to attend the APEC summit was quite appropriate given the dilemma of the dwindling talent pool. With the primary goal of growing the female demographic in the transportation industry’s professional leadership roles worldwide, the association is getting the attention it needs from the world economy’s major players to help move WTS’s strategic plan along. WTS has 48 chapters in the US, Canada, and the UK, and is now building a presence in Brazil, India, and Vienna. Each chapter encourages the continuing education of women in professional roles in the transportation industry with training, the advancement of women through the ranks with mentorships and networking, and now, in partnership with the US Department of Transportation, we’ve got our Transportation YOU program for young women aged 13 – 18.
Since Transportation You is designed to encourage girls to focus studies in the STEM disciplines, which are losing ground in popularity and at the core of concern at the APEC CEO summit last week, WTS is poised to steer the current path of the world’s future infrastructure back in the right direction.