Maine businesses need to expand in-house training and work closely with educators to create a more skilled workforce, a group that has been analyzing economic development prospects for the state said Tuesday.

Making Maine Work, primarily a collaboration of the Maine State Chamber of Commerce and the Maine Development Foundation, said programs for helping workers gain more skills are largely in place, but they should be strengthened and efforts should be made to create more collaboration among businesses, colleges and universities. They also touted internships and apprenticeships as effective ways to help employees gather the skills employers need.

The report is the fifth released by the group. Earlier studies examined barriers to a stronger economy; Maine’s higher education system; early childhood development; and increasing the size of the state’s workforce.

The latest report is available at www.mainechamber.org/makingmainework.php

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