WSJ Op Ed Calls for Reinvigoration of "Shop Class" Education Offerings

An April 24 opinion column written by Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel calls for a reinvestment and focus on career and technical education. The article is titled "Welders Make $150,000? Bring Back Shop Class" and subtitled "Taking pride in learning to make and build things can begin in high school. Plenty of jobs await."

Mr. Mandel states:

Too many young people have four-year liberal-arts degrees, are thousands of dollars in debt and find themselves serving coffee at  Starbucks or working part-time at the mall. Many of them would have been better off with a two-year skilled-trade or technical education that provides the skills to secure a well-paying job.

Visit The Wall Street Journal website to read the complete article. (Subscription may be required.)

Moneynews: College Degree No Longer the Solution to Good Jobs

Moneynews article: College Degree No Longer the Solution to Good Jobs

Thursday, January 23, 2014 06:54 AM

By: Neal Asbury

More than 40 percent of recent U.S. college graduates are unemployed, underemployed or need more training to get on a career track, according to a poll released last year by global management consulting firm Accenture.

The online survey of 1,050 workers who finished school in the previous two years and 1,010 who received their degree in 2013 also found that many graduates, some heavily in debt because of the cost of their education, say they are in jobs that do not require a college degree. In fact, just 53 percent of the graduates found full-time jobs in their field of study.

[Check out the rest of the article at Moneynews.]

High Heels and Hard Hats Article Spotlights Women in Construction Jobs

It's becoming increasingly easier to find positive female role models in the apprenticeable trades, including in the media. For a great article focusing on women in the construction industry, check out High Heels and Hard Hats from the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Constructor magazine!

Mike Rowe Interview

"If we are lending money that ostensibly we don't have to kids who have no hope of making it back in order to train them for jobs that clearly don't exist, I might suggest that we've gone around the bend a little bit," says TV personality Mike Rowe, best known as the longtime host of Discovery Channel's Dirty Jobs.

"There is a real disconnect in the way that we educate vis-a-vis the opportunities that are available. You have - right now - about 3 million jobs that can't be filled," he says, talking about openings in traditional trades ranging from construction to welding to plumbing. "Jobs that typically parents' don't sit down with their kids and say, 'Look, if all goes well, this is what you are going to do.'"

Rowe, who once sang for the Baltimore Opera and worked as an on-air pitchman for QVC, worries that traditional K-12 education demonizes blue-collar fields that pay well and are begging for workers while insisting that everyone get a college degree. He stresses that he's "got nothing against college" but believes it's a huge mistake to push everyone in the same direction regardless of interest or ability. Between Mike Rowe Foundation and Profoundly Disconnected, a venture between Rowe and the heavy equipment manufacturer Caterpillar, Rowe is hoping both to help people find new careers and publicize what he calls "the diploma dilemma."

Rowe recently sat down with Reason TV's Nick Gillespie to discuss his bad experience with a high school guidance counselor (3:20), why he provides scholarships based on work ethic (6:57), the problem with taxpayer-supported college loans (8:40), why America demonizes dirty jobs (11:32), the happiest day of his life (13:14), why following your passion is terrible advice (17:05), why it's so hard to hire good people (21:04), the hidden cost of regulatory compliance (23:16), the problem with Obama's promise to create shovel ready jobs (33:05), efficiency versus effectiveness (34:17), and life after Dirty Jobs (38:24).

You can check out the entire 41-minute-long interview here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzKzu86Agg0. Visit http://reason.com/reasontv/2013/12/13... for full text, links, and downloadable versions of the video.

MEATA 2013 Spring Conference Files

MEATA's 2013 Spring Conference, held May 15-17 at the Treetops Sylvan Resort in Gaylord, was a huge success, with over 50 professionals from across the state in attendance.

Presentation topics included:

  • MDOT: Apprenticeships - Our Way Forward
  • Charlevoix-Emmet ISD Manufacturing Partnership
  • Delta College Accelerated CNC Machinist Program
  • Qualifying for Veteran Training Funds Use
  • The Manufacturing Skills Mismatch Debate
  • MAT2 Mechatronics Apprenticeship Program Pilot
  • DOL Pre-Apprenticeship Update
  • Where is the Money for Registered Apprenticeship Training?
  • Michigan Merit Curriculum Legislative Update

Copies of the presentations are posted here!