The Governor’s Council on Education, the Kansas Chamber and the Brandmeyer Center for Applied Economics at the University of Kansas School of Business will hold business town hall meetings in Garden City and Dodge City next week, where they will discuss and define the need for a skilled workforce in the region.

The Garden City town hall is scheduled for 11:45 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday at St. Catherine Hospital Classroom B, and the Dodge City town hall will be from noon to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday in Guymon Petro Bar & Grill’s upstairs ballroom. The hosting organizations invite the local business communities and other entities to attend.

The town halls will take place alongside a survey-based research project from the Governor’s Council, Kansas Chamber and Brandmeyer Center, which will poll Kansas businesses on their experiences recruiting and hiring a skilled workforce. In a press release from the Brandmeyer Center, the organizations said the evolving Kansas economy demanded new skills for success and ongoing collaboration between the state’s business and education sectors would be necessary to prepare future employees.

Kansas Chamber President and CEO Alan Cobb said in the release that the data collected through the survey would help the chamber develop an action plan for enforcing the state’s needed workforce over the next two decades.

Businesses can find and complete the survey at www.kansasskillsgap.org.