Saturday, August 18, 2012

Go to trade school, young man

Here's this week's WND column entitled Go To Trade School, Young Man.


  1. How many of those kids are staying in school, making more debt because their loans are due soon after they leave school? Since they cannot find jobs they are staying in school because they cannot afford to beging paying on their loans. A horrible catch 22.

  2. Patrice, these are such wise words. As a mom of three boys, I'm keeping in view the goal of them one day being able to support families of their own, and college is definitely NOT our "default position". As you said, if they have a specific goal and college/university is the most logical (or only) means of reaching it, we will do our best to help them reach that goal.

    But for heaven's sake, you don't go to college to "find yourself", or to "broaden your horizons". Ha! A university education more often does the opposite! It narrows your horizons.

    We have a university, a community college, and a Vocational/Technical institute all right here where we live. Our first goal, along with home-schooling, is for them to utilize our state's "Running Start" program (tuition-free college classes during HS) to complete a two-year degree at the CC or VoTec, debt-free. Then we'll go from there.

    Julie G

  3. Patrice,

    Great news article and blog post. We knew our son wouldn't want to attend college and suggested he check out the local vocational schools in the area. Instead of going directly to the vocation/techincal schools he went to his high school guidance counselor. Asked about the opportunities available and found out his high school offered a scholarship program through the state. Which made this opportunity even more enticing to him. He didn't want Mom and Dad to have to pay for the tuition. He came home with the paperwork to fill out and had us review it to make sure everything was in order and there was no fine print. Within 2 months he was accepted and recieved full scholarship at the local techinical school. The only responsibility to the parents was to provide the required hand tools and books. Our actual out of pocket expense for 3 years of schooling $500.00. Our son attended high school and technical school at the same time. For those students who didn't have their own vehicles the school provided a bus to get them to and from the technical school. Our son has since graduated both high school and technical school and is working fulltime as a certified Welder, making fabulous money.

  4. Society will always need Electricians,plumbers and carpenters.The basics of these trades carry over to other trades and they will always be needed no matter how advanced or simple the world goes. Besides in my opinion the college system is just a brain washing racket.

  5. hi. in the state we used to live in the university would not issue a degree unless three feminist classes were completed. enforced brain-washing at your expense, which added insult to injury.
    a young man who went to college in pennsylvania, who lived with us in the summer, came home and worked himself up to ask me privately about some touchy subjects. it seems he had been taught in one of their feminist classes, he had been forced to attend and pay for, that when husband and wife come together it is always rapery!!! can you believe it??

    on another note, a man who lost his job with a.t.&t.
    due to outsourcing to india, was interviewed on a news magazine program some years ago said that he was making sure his three boys were learning a trade during the summer months between college semesters. as the man said you cannot lay cable from india.

    thanks, deb harvey

  6. We need two things to be absolutely free in this HEALTH CARE......and free EDUCATION. There are 33 countries in the world that provide free HEALTH CARE and 133 that provide FREE EDUCATION.

    We are the richest nation in the world so why can't we get it right? There is only one difference between us and the people in those countries........and that is that they pay their fair share of taxes across the board.....including the very rich.

    I know for a fact that I paid 30% in income taxes last year and Romney, by his own admission (for what thats worth since he won't prove it).......paid only 13.6%.......a MULTI-MILLIONAIRE!! I ask you, what is wrong with this picture? By the is speculated that Huntsman Senior who used to work at Bain Capitol spilled the beans to Harry Reid about Romney paying zero taxes in the last 10 years.....I'd say that is a good reason to back off from coughing them up.......!!

    The millionaires and billionaires in this country are paying less than they have ever paid in history. You bet.....the best we can do is a good trade school until we can unprivitize the universities and put it back to the way it was when FDR was president. He had the richest paying their fair share and the country did well. Just look at history. It says it all........

    1. Troll,
      Nothing is free. Someone somewhere is paying for it, either willingly or unwillingly at the point of a gun. Besides, aren't income taxes "voluntary". That is what the IRS will tell you. Just try and not pay though.
      Fed up with the class warfare bull.

    2. Are you saying that 32 countries with free health care and 133 countries with free education are dillusional?

      I would think you would want to know how they do it. And "free" is after paying least "fair" taxes. (That goes without saying).....Catch up, Paintedmoose!! This effects YOU!

    3. Yup, I have relatives in Spain that are experiencing that free education with which you are so enamored. One 16 year old cousin is sweating his life right now. If he wishes to go to a free public university, he must score in the top 10 percent in the country of his graduating class. Otherwise he can’t go to college as his family can’t pay the exorbitant price tag of the private universities (the only other option.) He visited this summer and was telling us how bad things were there and how all want to move to the USA because it is still seen as the land of opportunity. Perhaps you should go there and trade places?

    4. AMEN!! to you Paintedmoose. Nothing is free and I'm getting tired of paying for people with their hand. Nor do I think the wealthy class is obligated to pay more. They are the job creators and need their income to invest (plus they take the financial risks) back in businesses.
      If it is better in other countries than maybe the troll should pack up and move to one of those better countries and leave our America alone!

    5. Boy have you been dumbed down.....

      The so called "job creators" started with REAGAN and collectivly speaking have trickled down NOTHING to the middle class or WE WOULD ALL HAVE JOBS invest in the stock market and collect dividend checks.

      Nothings free???? You pay taxes and you receive medical and educational coverage...instead of paying taxes and RECEIVING NOTHING!!! I have to explain everyting??

      The chess board needs to be rearranged to take care of all of us. It can be done if WE ALL PAY OUR FAIR SHARE.

      Are you Christian?..then picture Christ just taking care of himself and the rest be damned....It didn't happen that way. We are all in this together bro.

    6. You seem very angry. I'll pray for you.

    7. Yes, I am a Christian and you are misrepresenting what Christ did or would do. He was beaten and tortured and died on the cross, descended into Hell and then rose again to pay for our sins. I do not take His sacrifice lightly and you with your comments make a mockery of what He did.
      As far as all paying their "fair share", when the 50% who pay nothing start paying their "fair share" then all when be able to pay less. By the way, I DO NOT WANT GOVERNMENT "HEALTH CARE" or GOVERNMENT "EDUCATION" for me or my family.
      The federal government must be taken back to those few things that they were authorized to do by the Founding Fathers and the Constitution. The rest is for the states and localities and WE THE PEOPLE.
      To Stuck in CA. You are right, Anonymous seems very angry and we should indeed pray for them. I also pray that you, too will be able to escape CA as we did.

    8. I'm in Canada where we have free healthcare for everyone and it baffles me that Americans wouldn't want the same thing. Are you expected to pay for your own healthcare - at a time when you're sick or disabled? it makes no sense. My sister had to have six surgeries a few years ago, without which she would have died. What would have happened if we had been in the States? No way my family could have paid for that. Would she be left to die? Even for basic healthcare needs - low-income people must put off going to the doctor at all costs, and wait until they're in really rough shape, knowing they'll have to pay for it. Fortunately for me, I haven't needed anything major beyond annual checkups from the healthcare system, but I'm happy to chip in through my taxes to help those who do need it. Why wouldn't you want free healthcare for everyone, rich and poor?

  7. I'm actually looking at the issue from the backside. I do have a well paying job which was not in my major in college, but I am quite aware that my field is becoming smaller and due to my experience, I am becoming pricer compared to less experienced college graduates. I'm pretty sure I would not be able to secure a job in my original major at this point, so I actually started looking into vocational programs at our local JC/CC (welding, in my case) to hedge my bet against another round of unemployment. I've been there once and it was not at all pleasurable.

  8. Twenty-five years ago a high school student of mine told me that he didn't quite know what to do since he didn't think college was for him but he wanted to make a good living. I asked him if he had anything against the idea of being a plumber or electrician. He said "No" and signed up for apprentice plumbing during his junior and senior in high school. He was a journeyman two years after that and became a master plumber. He's never been without a job and does very well. The problem is that he thinks now that his own son could do better if he went to college.

  9. Stuck in an officeAugust 20, 2012 at 5:55 AM

    I graduated from the same university as the 3 previous generations of my family. I was not aware of any other option. I have benefited financially and have a good career. I am able to provide for my family and my wife is able to raise our children instead of work to pay for daycare. I do however spend many hours a day reading about machining and gunsmithing and spend large amounts of time and money trying to learn a hobby that could have been a trade. I am not happy in my office. I just wish there had been an option presented to me. I would be a happy dirty machinist right now.

  10. Even with trade schools you have to remember to choose wisely in the choice of career you pursue. Those schools are out to make as much money as they can so they are pumping out a new batch of graduates every quarter. It can glut the market in your field very quickly. My ex experienced that first hand with his electronics tech education.

    You still have to be willing to look far afield in your job search even from a trade/technical school.

    My experience from a technical school ( I worked as a CAD tech/drafter)is that it gets you an entry level job and that the market for replacement workers is so rich for the employer that the jobs you get with just a trade school diploma alone are cogs in the machine type positions; They have paid low and there is a line of applicants waiting behind you if you don't like it. If you don't want your salary to price you out of the market you have to up your education and move on to other avenues within the field. Of course that is what happens with jobs like CAD tech or the basic electronics assembly that you get from places like ITT Tech where I went to school. Jobs like plumber, welder, carpenter are easier to turn into self run businesses.

    It's been 20 years since I graduated from techincal school and I am still paying the student loans I had to take out. Most of the time since then I didn't make enough money in my field to pay back the loans and provide for my family at the same time. Now that I am married to a good provider he is paying off the loan and I am a SAHM.

  11. I am surprised that you friend's son couldn't get a job as a civil engineer; there is a big demand for them - unemployment in science and technical fields is very low, particularly engineering.
    As a mechanical engineer, college enabled me to make MUCH more than I could have without a degree, and I did not have trouble finding a job, or switching jobs when I wanted to.
    Whatever you do, keep learning and working hard - don't plan to stay where you are in maturity and knowledge.

  12. To Anonymous, the response to your assertion that the wealthy paying less taxes does not create jobs is "YES". It's also completely irrelevant to whether or not today's young adults should consider trade school or college. Back when I was in high school I floated the idea of not going to college and with the reaction I got I might as well have converted to Islam and come out of the closet at the same time.

    Now the field I went to school for (finance) has been decimated. Right now I am still employed because of the lack of skilled workers in this field. Entry level jobs were outsourced to India, and there is a shortage of skilled workers because now new Americans to do these jobs.

    I know sooner or later the mid-level jobs will be outsourced, too, so I am looking for another field. Of course, when one makes an application the slightest direction away from one's job history, HR looks at the applicant like they have 9 heads. I did a stint as a corrections officer before my family intervened and told me they didn't want me doing it anymore. Going to trade school might be the only way to start over with a clean slate.

  13. Ah, what wonderful advise. I am retired after working as a skilled tradesman all of my life. I went to college for two years and had to drop out because of financial concerns (I am terrified of debt.) I went into a registered apprenticeship and it served me well. Every year, after the apprenticeship, I went back and took courses to further my education and make myself even more employable. I went into construction management and I was a project manager on some of the largest projects East of the Mississippi.

    One thing I would point out is to watch out for the "for-profit" trade schools. While many are good, there are many that teach little worthwhile knowledge. Some even hope that you will get disgusted and drop out. (Often the tuition still has to be paid.) I would advise anyone going to a "for-profit trade school to investigate the school thoroughly. Talk to graduates, find out how many are working in the trade, tour the school, sit in on some classes, make sure that you read AND FULLY UNDERSTAND the contract you will sign. I know two instructors in a "for-profit" school and they make about $17,000 a year teaching. It is a part time job for them.