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Tue Aug 6, 2019, 09:07 AM

The Hot New Gen-Z Trend Is Skipping College (For trade school)

High schoolers are weighing the benefits of blue-collar trades at a time when well-paying jobs—and no debt—are hard to pass up.

On a recent Wednesday morning, about 20 students at Queens Technical High School marched into a supply closet and retrieved what looked, to an outsider, like silver suitcases. They sat back down at the classroom’s U-shaped table arrangement and opened what were in fact “advanced cable trainers,” kits containing the cables and wire cutters they’d be working with throughout their senior year. Meanwhile, their teacher, David Abreu, began to lecture them about what it’s like out “in industry”—the vocational school term for the proverbial “real world.”

“When you go out there, there’s no reason why anyone should be sitting on mommy’s couch, eating cereal, and watching cartoons or a telenovela,” he told the teens, who were mostly male. “There’s tons of construction, and there’s not enough people. So they’re hiring from outside of New York City. They’re getting people from the Midwest. I love the accents, but they don’t have enough of you.”
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Abreu was onto something. As the Brookings Institution noted in 2017, participation in career and technical education (CTE) has declined for several decades. That was in part because of a lack of funding and the fact that many states implemented more stringent academic requirements. However, the growing belief that everyone should obtain a college education also surely played a part. The National Center for Education Studies found that the number of CTE credits earned by American high school students declined by 14 percent between 1990 and 2009.

But the jobs are still there. NPR reported in April that the pressure to attend a four-year college remained so strong in American society that many high-paying jobs in the trades were currently sitting empty. Melissa Burg, the principal of Queens Tech, insisted that New York City’s Department of Education and some savvy parents had taken note of this dynamic, increasingly regarding a bachelor’s degree as the new high school diploma.

“I think those [trade] jobs go unfilled because skilled labor is looked down upon, even though those skilled labor people make more money than I do,” she explained. “I don’t know if people don’t want to work as physically hard as they used to, or if they see their families who’ve worked hard physically, or if those families are saying, ‘Don’t do what I did.’”
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https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/pa9myg/the-hot-new-gen-z-trend-is-skipping-college-v25n3

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Reply The Hot New Gen-Z Trend Is Skipping College (For trade school) (Original post)
Renew Deal Aug 2019 OP
True Blue American Aug 2019 #1
Renew Deal Aug 2019 #4
democrank Aug 2019 #2
Laffy Kat Aug 2019 #3
Igel Aug 2019 #5
AllyCat Aug 2019 #6

Response to Renew Deal (Original post)

Tue Aug 6, 2019, 09:15 AM

1. A lot depends

In what you are studying. Having that background is all important.

My Son swears that Vocational School, and Community College gave him the background to be a successful Engineer. He transferred to a 4 year.

Grandson took Engineering in High school building Award winning Robots.. Times have changed drastically.

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Response to True Blue American (Reply #1)

Tue Aug 6, 2019, 11:20 AM

4. I'm not sure why it makes sense to pay big money for 2 years of a 4 year school

When you can go to community college and still get into the same 4 year schools. No one will care about how someone gets their bachelors if they get it.

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Response to Renew Deal (Original post)

Tue Aug 6, 2019, 09:38 AM

2. Trade schools are the perfect route for so many.

I hope this new focus on them will help bring back respect for working with our hands.

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Response to Renew Deal (Original post)

Tue Aug 6, 2019, 09:40 AM

3. I've always thought this was a great idea.

My oldest hasn't gone to college yet. He got his EMT and is working at a hospital right now. Even though it doesn't pay all that much, he's still making the same hourly wage as many of his high-school friends.

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Response to Renew Deal (Original post)

Tue Aug 6, 2019, 01:00 PM

5. They finally heard the research.

From the late '90s. Of course, they hear it not because it's research but because we've had the great wave of "college isn't good for nothing" spate of nihilists who completely missed the point of the research they were twisting.

Too many 4-year degrees by far, with employers often requiring a 4-year degree for something that leaves an intelligence bachelor's holder bored to tears and over-educated. Oh, and with 4 years of student loans (or Pell grants) instead of 2. Wasted money on wasted college resources. Too many college kids spend little time studying in college programs that they weren't really ready for, because they're entitled to a piece of paper that their parents wanted.

Not enough 2-year degrees and vocational certifications. Mustn't get one's hands dirty. Even as we still expect others to do so for us. It's a cultural thing--we look down on tradesmen and craftsmen. It's a stupid, elitist, cultural thing, mostly growing since the '50s with the "everybody must go to college" group-think.

Too many high-school drop-outs. Many of whom, to be honest, probably *wouldn't* drop out if they weren't failing college-readiness courses or learned something they found useful, given their background and that of their parents.


My only concern is that if we right-degreed everybody there'd be some racial or class stratification. After all, I look at my students who don't see a point in college or learning subjects that don't get them jobs and most of them are poor or working class. Then you look at how those classes match up with demographics, and there's a racial skew. So if we right-degreed students, there'd be a huge wonkish class saying, "But we must make sure every field, every certification, is like the current demographic make up of America."

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Response to Renew Deal (Original post)

Tue Aug 6, 2019, 09:42 PM

6. Every mechanic in our town has a help wanted sign in the window

We need people in the trades. Many of those jobs won’t be outsourced.

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