Date of Graduation

12-2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Workforce Development Education (EdD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Rehabilitation, Human Resources and Communication Disorders

Advisor

Kit Kacerik

Committee Member

Michael T. Miller

Second Committee Member

Théres Steiffer

Keywords

Social sciences; Education; Arkansas; Dislocated worker; Job training; Trade Adjustment Assistance; Wages

Abstract

A number of costs are associated with the implementation of trade agreements not the least of which is the cost to the American workforce. The information age ushered in an era of globalization unlike anything the world economy had experienced before. As countries raced forward to dominate emerging markets and grow market share, millions of American workers were left in the wake. A remedy to the plight of the dislocated worker was found in trade adjustment assistance, specifically in job training benefits.

This study examined the wage differences experienced by Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) job training participants served through the Western Arkansas LWIA. The results from this dissertation indicated TAA job training participants who completed the ascribed program experienced no significant difference in wages when they returned to work than dislocated workers who did not complete TAA job training programs. Upon closer examination, program completers experienced a significant difference in wage change during the three quarters following program exit when compared to their wages for the last three quarters of employment prior to entering the job training program. However, unlike the goal of WIA would suggest, program participants earned significantly less when they reentered the workforce. Socio-demographics were examined to isolate nuances that impacted wages. Neither gender nor ethnicity data were marked as significantly different. However, as it pertained to prior education attainment level and tenure in position at time of qualifying event, significant differences were found. Post hoc testing identified between which subgroups of these two independent variables were significantly different from others within each variable.

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