In a move to measure its workforce not too long ago, Nationwide Insurance surveyed its 36,000 employees at the time. Its CEO was in for a shock. The single largest employment category had nothing to do with insurance and was instead "technology."
The story is told by Brian Fitzgerald, executive director of the Business-Higher Education Forum, to dramatize the transformation of the U.S. workforce. At Nationwide, an entire upper tier of computer scientists had to be brought in from India because the company didn't have enough in Ohio.
"You can be selling insurance or manufacturing cars," Fitzgerald says, "but almost every American corporation has been turned into a technology operation."
Nationwide isn't alone. The number of computer science degrees awarded to U.S. citizens from 2004 to 2007 (the latest figures available) declined 27%, according to the National Science Board.
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