Rushville Republican

October 29, 2013

State Rep. Cindy Ziemke: Great ideas


Rushville Republican

---- — A few months ago, I wrote a column focusing on the Indiana Career Council, highlighting how it will help Hoosiers gain employment matching their skills and expertise by aligning educational institutions’ curriculum with what skills employers say they need. Here in our district we can say that idea is nothing new, and it certainly seems to work!

I recently saw a news story out of Indianapolis about our Batesville High School Engineering and Technology class that took a visit to the Batesville Casket Company. It shared a little about the Advance Manufacturing and Logistics Curriculum at Batesville High School and how the school, Ivy Tech and local businesses work together to give students the chance to graduate ahead of the curve.

That news piece reminded me of how a great idea, when implemented elsewhere, can take off and really make a difference. The educational model created by Batesville HS was the spark that set off a wildfire of understanding – preparing students for the real world, whether that’s higher education, a technical career or taking over the family business, will help close the opportunity gap in Indiana.

Starting with an idea and ending with a program that has the potential to impact thousands of young Hoosiers’ futures – that’s what Batesville High School did with the help of several great superintendents, local businesses and willing students.

Our state is already great and still has so much potential. Just a couple weeks ago Connersville announced that the cabinet company Wayzata Home Products is moving in, bringing with it more than 300 jobs for Hoosiers. That is a huge boon to our section of the state and will certainly attract even more positive attention our way.

These announcements and educational developments just go to show that Hoosiers’ hard work does pay off. Companies will continue to notice our business friendly environment and strong workforce, made even stronger through the efforts of great educators, forward-thinking curriculums, strong economic policies, flourishing natural resources and a willing workforce.

I can hardly believe that I am almost halfway through my first term in office. I learned so much over the past year, but I know there is still much work for me to do. None of the great Indiana accomplishments would be possible without your ideas, feedback and encouragement, for which I am incredibly thankful. Please continue to share your locally grown ideas, thoughts, questions and concerns with me as the 2014 legislative session grows near. I’m available by email at h55@iga.in.gov or by phone at 317-232-9850. Together, we can keep Indiana moving forward.

State Rep. Cindy Ziemke serves as Vice Chairman of the Family, Children and Human Affairs Committee. She also serves on the Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development Committee and the Select Committee on Government Reduction. Rep. Ziemke represents portions of Rush, Fayette, Franklin, Ripley and Decatur counties.