West Liberty University’s Institute for Innovation in Education released its West Virginia Jobs and Education Report at a 10 a.m. press conference held today at the Highlands Center Campus.

President Robin C. Capehart introduces Dr. Serkan Catma to media.

President Robin C. Capehart introduces Dr. Serkan Catma to media.

Dr. Serkan Catma, a senior fellow at the Institute discussed the report and explained what the data meant.

“This analytical study compares the anticipated job market with the college degrees awarded by the post-secondary institutions in West Virginia. The purpose of the report is to analyze the ability of the state’s post-secondary institutions to meet the demands of the labor market,” Catma said.

“The high unemployment rate that persists both statewide and across the nation has been signaling a worsening in the labor markets. However, certain occupations are expected to experience above average job growth,” he said.

The report documents future labor market needs for the state of West Virginia by estimating labor shortage versus surplus per occupation.

Data for occupations with the largest job growth from 2010 to 2020 was obtained from the U.S. Department of Labor and Workforce West Virginia. Data for degrees conferred by higher education institutions between 2007 and 2012 was provided by the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC).

Catma also is associate professor of economics at West Liberty’s Gary E. West College of Business. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Economics at Istanbul University, Turkey, and both his Master’s of Business Administration and Doctorate in Natural Resource Economics degrees at West Virginia University.

A resident of Wheeling, Catma joined WLU in 2007.