Tag Archives: Vocational Education

New York Federal Reserve Bank report: Many college grads underemployed

11 Aug

One Tennessee Study found that quite often kids are encouraged to choose college over vocational or trade options. The societal push the last few years has been to have more kids go to college. Quite often schools are ranked on the percentage of kids that go directly to college from high school. So, counselors are following cultural cues they have received from administrators, parents, and the media. http://www.tennessee.gov/education/cte_council/doc/career_college_advice.pdf The Pew Research Center has a report, Is College Worth It? http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2011/05/15/is-college-worth-it/ Amanda Paulson of the Christian Science Monitor has a great article, Does Everyone Need A College Degree? Maybe Not Says Harvard Study http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Education/2011/0202/Does-everyone-need-a-college-degree-Maybe-not-says-Harvard-study about a Harvard study.

A new report released by Harvard Wednesday states in some of the strongest terms yet that such a “college for all” emphasis may actually harm many American students – keeping them from having a smooth transition from adolescence to adulthood and a viable career.
“The American system for preparing young people to lead productive and prosperous lives as adults is clearly badly broken,” concludes the report, “Pathways to Prosperity” (pdf).

Harvard has quite a bit of press about the report. Jill Anderson wrote the press release, Pathways to Prosperity Seeks to Redefine the American Education System which is at the Harvard site. The point of the report is whether there should be a variety of post-high school paths and not just the focus on a B.A. Still, there should be post-high school training which would provide additional skills. http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news-impact/2010/02/pathways-to-prosperity-seeks-to-redefine-american-education-system/

One of the goals of education is to give the student sufficient basic skills to be able to leave school and be able to function at a job or correctly assess their training needs. One of the criticisms of the current education system is that it does not adequately prepare children for work or for a career. https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/03/24/borrowing-from-work-schools-teach-career-mapping/ A liberal arts education has been considered the gold standard. A Washington Post article has some good tips about how a liberal arts education could be made valuable in the current economic climate.

Andy Chan, vice president of the Wake Forest University Office of Personal and Career Development, and Jacquelyn S. Fetrow, Reynolds Professor of Computational Biophysics and dean of Wake Forest College wrote in the Washington Post about producing employable liberal arts grads. In the article, Six tips for liberal arts colleges to produce employable grads, Chan and Fetrow give the following advice:

Here are a few recommendations for liberal arts colleges to more deeply realize and communicate the value of the liberal education for the world of work today:
• Develop partnerships that bridge the career development office with the faculty and academic advisors. Students demand to know how their choice of major will affect their career options. By sharing these data and student examples with the faculty and academic advisors, the career development office becomes more vital to students and to the faculty. With the endorsement and influence of the faculty, students utilize the complete range of resources offered by the career development office starting from their first year on campus.
• Provide opportunities for faculty to understand the needs of employers. When professors understand why employers hire certain students, they can articulate how the academic material can be applied variety of work settings and help students recognize and better market this knowledge and skills. They can also more effectively mentor students and provide career advice and connections.
• Make internships and/or research projects an integral part of the student experience. Make sure the student demonstrates the drive to stick with a research problem for longer than a semester. A survey by the Association of American Colleges and Universities found that 84 percent of executives at private sector and non-profit organizations expressed a desire for students to complete a significant project before graduation to demonstrate their depth of knowledge and a passion for a particular areas, as well as their acquisition of broad analytical, problem solving and communication skills.
• Offer credit-based courses in career development so that students learn the fundamentals for lifelong career management. With projections that today’s graduate will have eight or more jobs in their life, they must be equipped with the knowledge, skills and tools to navigate the path from college to career as well as post-graduate career changes.
• Bring recent alumni from a variety of careers to campus and perhaps into the classroom to share their experiences for how they utilize their liberal education. Today’s students expect immediate answers and a direct line from major to career. At Wake Forest University, history professors require their students to participate in teleconferences with alumni who applied their bachelor’s degree in history to relevant but not directly related fields, such as journalism, law and marketing. Understanding the breadth of real-world opportunities dispels the myth that all history – and other liberal arts – majors are destined to become professors.
• Develop partnerships between the liberal arts college and the business school to enable faculty and students to work and learn across boundaries. Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise, now the most popular minor at Wake Forest, emerged from a college-business school collaboration. Alternatively, many students choose to acquire the Masters in Management degree at Wake Forest in their fifth year to develop the business knowledge and leadership skills to complement their liberal undergraduate education. These types of partnerships are essential to provide students with the skills to apply their liberal arts skills to business-world problems.
There are many possible solutions to help students realize and articulate the relevancy of the liberal education to the world of work. The one requirement is that liberal arts colleges must make personal and career development a mission-critical part of the undergraduate experience – and they must collaborate with faculty in the endeavor.
A liberal arts education, long regarded as one of America’s unique sources of strength, remains an important vehicle for nurturing young talent who will produce the answers for our future. However, a liberal education without regard to career relevance is not enough. Liberal arts colleges must begin rethinking success by demonstrating relevance beyond the classroom. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/college-inc/post/six-tips-for-liberal-arts-colleges-to-produce-employable-grads/2012/03/31/gIQAQb6EnS_blog.html

In the current economy more and more prospective students are wondering if college is a good investment.

Jill Barshay of The Hechinger Report reported in the article, Reflections on the Underemployment of College Graduates:

Most people — and especially parents of 20-something college graduates — know that the job market is particularly tough right now for recent college grads. But so tough that about half of them are either unemployed or underemployed?
That is what analysts for the New York Federal Reserve Bank of New York calculated, in a January, 2014, report, “Are Recent College Graduates Finding Good Jobs?” Defining “underemployed as working in low-paid jobs that don’t require college degrees, the analysts, Jaison R. Abel, Richard Deitz, and Yaqin Su, found that roughly 6 percent of recent college graduates, aged 22 to 27, were unemployed at the beginning of 2013 and 44 percent were underemployed. The unemployment figure has likely dropped since then, along with the overall drop in unemployment. But it’s quite possible that underemployment — the percentage of college grads who are in jobs that don’t require college degrees — hasn’t changed much.
Curiously enough, this New York Fed study was largely a rebuttal to the popular notion that the job market is much worse for college grads today. The authors looked at two decades of data and found that the combination of unemployment and underemployment is roughly the same today as it was for college graduates in the early 1990s who also had to seek jobs during a recession. By age 30, the majority of the 1990s cohort eventually found better work, and the same could happen for the current crop of college graduates.
But the authors also pointed to some ominous signs. They drilled down into the data of the underemployed and noted that it’s more likely for recent graduates to be in a low-wage or a part-time job than in the past. In other words, there’s a smaller share of college graduates in well-paying non-college jobs, such as electrician, dental hygienist or mechanic. And there’s a rising share of college graduates in the lowest paid of the non-college jobs, such as bartender, food server and cashier. That could make it harder for these young adults to transition to higher skilled jobs in the next few years. Time will tell.
Harvard professor Richard B. Freeman, one of the leading U.S. labor economists, wrote that he believes things are also worse now for American college graduates because of international competition. “The college graduate situation has a global dimension — 6 million bachelor’s graduates in China that affect the U.S. market as well — which is very different than in the past,” he wrote.
It’s worth pausing a moment to understand how economists think about underemployment, an admittedly fuzzy term. The New York Federal Reserve used the Department of Labor’s O*Net surveys. If at least 50 percent of the respondents working in a particular occupation say it requires a college degree, then the New York Fed labeled the occupation a college job. And it called a college graduate “underemployed” if he or she worked in a job for which less than half the respondents said a bachelor’s degree was necessary. Under this definition, every college-educated real estate broker, registered nurse and Shakespearean actor is classified as underemployed.
Sometimes fields change and become more sophisticated. Twenty years ago, some jobs didn’t require college degrees that now do. Journalism is one where many people didn’t have a college degree a couple generations ago. Now, even O*Net says reporters need a college degree. One question interesting labor economists is whether the employers hiring young adults can be more selective than the job itself warrants, and can demand college degrees simply because they have an excess of college graduates to choose from. Many elementary schools in the New York City area, for example, have the luxury of being able to demand that any teacher’s aide have a B.A. But O*Net says that the degree isn’t necessary for that job. Over time, that could change, if enough teacher’s aides respond that a college degree is necessary to be a teacher’s aide, even though you could perform the job superbly without one….
Reflections on the Underemployment of College Graduates – Higher Education http://diverseeducation.com/article/66209/

A college degree is no guarantee of either employment or continued employment. Still, because of the economic uncertainty there is an “arms race” in education. Laura Pappano reported in the New York Times article, The Master’s As the New Bachelor’s http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/24/education/edlife/edl-24masters-t.html?emc=eta1&_r=0 Whether a person chooses to attend a four year college after high school is a very personal decision and there is no one right answer. One thing the current economic climate has taught many is there are no guarantees in life, even with a college degree. https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/why-go-to-college/

Resources:

A publication by the government Why Attend College? Is a good overview http://www2.ed.gov/pubs/Prepare/pt1.html

Article in USA Today about gap year http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/education/2008-06-18-gap-year_N.htm

Advantages of Going to a Vocational School http://www.gocollege.com/options/vocational-trade-schools/

Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology http://www.accsc.org/Resources/Links.aspx

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A diploma mill may derail your dreams

3 Jul

Many people are unemployed or underemployed and they seek additional education to improve their employment chances. Not all education opportunities will benefit one’s future and diploma mills may derail your future prospects. Scott Mc Lemee wrote in the Inside Higher Education article, A Degree of Fraud:

It’s surprising how many house pets hold advanced degrees. Last year, a dog received his M.B.A. from the American University of London, a non-accredited distance-learning institution. It feels as if I should add “not to be confused with the American University in London,” but getting people to confuse them seems like a pretty basic feature of the whole AUOL marketing strategy.
The dog, identified as “Peter Smith” on his diploma, goes by Pete. He was granted his degree on the basis of “previous experiential learning,” along with payment of £4500. The funds were provided by a BBC news program, which also helped Pete fill out the paperwork. The American University of London required that Pete submit evidence of his qualifications as well as a photograph. The applicant submitted neither, as the BBC website explains, “since the qualifications did not exist and the applicant was a dog.”
The program found hundreds of people listing AUOL degrees in their profiles on social networking sites, including “a senior nuclear industry executive who was in charge of selling a new generation of reactors in the UK.” (For more examples of suspiciously credentialed dogs and cats, see this list.)
Inside Higher Ed reports on diploma mills and fake degrees from time to time but can’t possibly cover every revelation that some professor or state official has a bogus degree, or that a “university” turns out to be run by a convicted felon from his prison cell. Even a blog dedicated to the topic, Diploma Mill News http://diplomamillnews.blogspot.com/ , links to just a fraction of the stories out there. Keeping up with every case is just too much; nobody has that much Schaudenfreude in them…. http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2010/01/29/mills#sthash.KUHA4NFD.dpbs

Jennifer Williamson wrote, Six Signs Your Online School is a Diploma Mill for Distance Education.Org:

There are two common types of diploma mills. The first will simply mail you a degree for a fee of a few hundred dollars. They sometimes ask to see your resume first, and will pretend to vet you for “life experience credit.” Of course, everybody who applies gets enough life experience credit to earn an entire degree.
The second type will actually require some work, but it will be minimal. Your dissertation may be five pages long instead of fifty, and you’ll be able to earn a degree in months, not years. These diploma mills are a bit more dangerous than the first type, because they more closely resemble legitimate schools. However, there are still a few warning signs:
Lightning-Fast Degrees
It should take you four years to earn an undergraduate degree, two or three years to earn a Master’s degree, and another three to five—depending on the subject—to earn a Ph.D. Many diploma mills claim you can earn degrees in months, not years. Be cautious if a school you’re considering is making this claim.
Bogus Accreditation
Legitimate schools are reviewed by accreditation agencies: third-party nonprofits that hold schools to rigorous standards. There are six regional accreditors, and it’s best to go to a school that lists one of these as its accrediting agency.
Many online schools are accredited by one of a long list of national agencies in the U.S. instead. National accreditors are not always considered as rigorous as regional accreditors, but they are still legitimate.
The Council of Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) maintains a database of legitimately accredited schools. You can also check our list of regional, national, and known illegitimate accreditors. If the accrediting agency listed by your school is in the third category—or if it isn’t on this list at all—it’s probably a diploma mill.
They Charge per Degree
Legitimate schools charge per credit hour, per course, or per semester. Diploma mills often charge by degree. Some offer discounts if you order a second degree, which a legitimate school would never do. A small handful of legitimate schools do offer programs for a flat fee, but it’s rare.
It’s Easy To Get Credit For Life Experience
Some diploma mills will ask you to send in your resume, and will give you almost unlimited credits for life experience. In some cases, you can get all the credits you need for a degree through life experience. Just pay the school’s fees—usually a few hundred dollars or so—and they’ll mail you a degree.
This is tricky, because legitimate schools offer life experience credits as well. But it’s very rare to be able to earn your entire degree through life experience credit—and impossible with a post-graduate degree.
In addition, they’ll ask to see more than your resume to prove your competence. Legitimate schools will ask you to assemble a prior learning portfolio, write personal essays, take standardized tests, or undergo an interview process to determine whether you’ve really earned those life experience credits.
The Work Required Is Minimal
If you’re required to read a few articles, write a few simple papers, and hand in a five-page dissertation at the end, it’s not likely you’ve learned enough to earn a legitimate degree.
The School Is Located In A State With Little Regulation
Some states make it easier for diploma mills to operate than others. Alabama, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, and Wyoming are all common locations for diploma mills, because of loopholes in local law or lax regulation. Of course, there are many legitimate schools located in these states as well. But if your school looks suspicious already, check to see if it’s based in one of these states. If it is, it may be a bad sign.
http://www.distance-education.org/Articles/Six-Signs-Your-Online-School-is-a-Diploma-Mill-30.html#.T5RbdgbZ8tI.email

Ulinks has 16 Key Questions to Ask a Vocational School http://www.ulinks.com/vocationalschools-tradeschools.htm

The Missouri Department of Higher Education defines a “diploma mill” as:

What is a “diploma mill?”
A dictionary definition is “an unaccredited school or college that grants relatively worthless diplomas, as for a fee.”
Alternatively, a diploma mill might be described as an institution of higher education operating without supervision of a state or professional agency and granting diplomas which are either fraudulent or, because of the lack of proper standards, worthless…. standards. http://dhe.mo.gov/ppc/diplomamills.php

The key point is “diploma mills” have few standards.

How to Spot a Diploma Mill?

There is an excellent article at ELearners.Com which tells you how to spot a “diploma mill.”

They often have names similar to well-known colleges or universities, but fail to mention an accrediting agency or name a fake accrediting agency.
The organization frequently changes addresses, sometimes moving from state to state.
Written materials typically include numerous spelling and grammatical errors, sometimes on the diploma itself.
Overemphasis on the speed and brevity with which someone can receive a degree (e.g. “Call now and have your degree shipped to you overnight!”).
Degrees can be earned in far less time than normal (e.g. 27 days) or the diploma is printed with a specific backdate.
There is no selectivity in admissions, or any questions about previous test scores or detailed academic history.
No interaction with professors or faculty (e.g. only two emails are received from a professor).
Degree requirements are vague or unspecified, lacking class descriptions and without any mention of how many credit hours are required to complete a program.
Tuition and fees are typically on a per-degree basis.
Grade point average (GPA) and academic honors (e.g. Summa Cum Laude) can be specified at the time of purchase. http://www.elearners.com/online-education-resources/degrees-and-programs/diploma-mills/

Buyer beware, if it seems too easy and too good to be true, you probably should investigate the accreditation of the school.

What to Do If You are enrolled in a Diploma Mill?

The first step is not to enroll in a diploma mill in the first place. Jennifer Williamson of Distance-Education.org wrote the great article, What to Do If You’re Enrolled in a Diploma Mill:

But maybe you didn’t spot these signs up front—for whatever reason—and you’ve been fooled by a diploma mill into parting with your money. While it’s not likely you’ll get your money back, there are a few things you can do.
First: stop giving them your money
If you’re involved in paying tuition with the school, stop paying immediately.
Do not, under any circumstance, list the degree on your resume
List an unaccredited degree on your resume and you not only risk your reputation—you risk your job. It’s better not to have a degree at all than to have a degree from a diploma mill—and companies do check these credentials, sometimes years after the person has been hired.
Ask for a refund in writing
If you’re sure you’re enrolled in a diploma mill, send a letter immediately requesting a refund of all tuition money you’ve paid. Send it by registered mail, explain why you want the refund, and make a copy for your own records. It’s doubtful that the diploma mill will send back your money, but it’s worth a shot—and the letter may be useful if you want to take your complaint to court.
Notify the authorities
Tell your state’s attorney general office what’s happened—there should be a way to file complaints on the attorney general’s website. It’s possible that the attorney general’s office will choose to go after the diploma mill.
Report to the Better Business Bureau
Reporting to the Better Business Bureau is a good move because it will serve to warn other potential students about the school. The reporting process only takes a few minutes and can be done entirely online, and the Bureau may be able to help you resolve the complaint.
If you’ve been had by a diploma mill, you don’t have a lot of options. But you can go public with your grievance and it’s possible law enforcement will decide to go after the school. Tell your attorney general and notify the Better Business Bureau. Stop doing assignments and paying tuition to the school. Send a registered letter outlining the reason why you want a refund, but don’t count on getting your money back. Don’t list your unaccredited degree on your resume or try to let your employer think your degree is real. If you do, you could experience some negative repercussions. http://www.distance-education.org/Articles/What-to-Do-If-You-re-Enrolled-in-a-Diploma-Mill-220.html

If you have been sucked into a diploma mill scheme, at the federal level, you can file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. You can go to Federal Trade Commission Complaint http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0206-diploma-mills and you can report fraud to your state. Consumer Fraud Reporting.Org lists how to contact your state attorney general. http://www.consumerfraudreporting.org/stateattorneygenerallist.php

During periods of crisis or uncertainty the scam artists emerge and try to take advantage of the unsuspecting. Before making a decision about any school, students, parents, and guardians must research the options.

Resources:
Diploma Mill Degrees Too Good to Be True http://www.cmn.com/2012/06/diploma-mill-degrees-too-good-to-be-true/

How to Spot a Diploma Mill
http://www.onlinecollegedegrees.net/avoiding-cheap-education

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No need to kill all the lawyers, they are dying of natural causes

14 Nov

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD FART: Moi is an Emeritus Attorney, she practices pro bono law and no longer works for fees. She still gets the bar magazine called the NW Lawyer and this month’s edition is designed to smack the barristers into reality. First, there is the article, The First Thing We Do: Let’s Kill All The Lawyers http://nwlawyer.wsba.org/nwlawyer/november_2013#pg26

The real reality check comes from Washington State Bar Association (WSBA) President Patrick A. Palace as he opines on the state of the profession in the article, Game Changers at page six:

The Changing Profession

Some lawyers blame the loss of business on the economy and are waiting for the good times to return. Others complain that they are under attack by unauthorized practitioners and we need to build more protections, but most agree that practicing law is getting harder. And there are specific reasons practice is getting harder. http://nwlawyer.wsba.org/nwlawyer/november_2013#pg9

Palace goes on to describe the challenges of law practice in detail and offer some possible paths to surviving the environment. This is a must read for anyone considering a career as a lawyer

The career conundrum starts early. Kelsey Sheehy posted at U.S. News the article, Study: High School Grads Choosing Wrong College Majors:

Teens are selecting college majors that don’t match their interests, according to a new report, but experts say that is OK.

Choosing the right college major is almost as important as choosing the right college.

Majors give students direction and allow them to map out their path to graduation. Some majors, such as engineering, information technology or accounting, also help prepare students to enter a specific career field.

Students who select a major that matches their interests are more likely to stick with it and finish their degree on time, but few high school graduates are choosing a major that suits them, a report released today by ACT Inc. finds.

Almost 80 percent of ACT test-takers who graduated in 2013 said they knew which major they would pursue in college. Of those students, only 36 percent chose a major that fit their interests, according to the study. ACT used answers from the exam’s Interest Inventory, which asks a series of questions to determine career areas where a student might excel.

This disconnect isn’t exactly surprising, says Beth Heaton, senior director of educational consulting at College Coach, an advising firm.

A former regional director of admissions for the University of Pennsylvania, Heaton has read thousands of college applications. She now advises teens trying to get into college.

“The vast majority of them have no idea what they really want to do when they grow up. Even the ones who claim that they do,” she says. “How can you know? If you’re 16, 17, 18, you know so little of the world….” http://www.usnews.com/education/blogs/high-school-notes/2013/11/11/study-high-school-grads-choosing-wrong-college-majors

Here is the press release from ACT:

Many Students Select a College Major That Doesn’t Fit Their Interests Well

November 11 2013

IOWA CITY, Iowa—Only about a third of ACT®-tested high school graduates selected a college major that is a good fit with their interests, according to a new research report from ACT titled College Choice Report Part 1: Preferences and Prospects. The findings suggest that high school students need more help planning for college and career—and that the majority want such assistance.

ACT’s research looked at the 79 percent of ACT-tested 2013 high school graduates who reported a college major that they planned to pursue, comparing their ACT Interest Inventory profile with profiles of college students in the same program of study. Students complete the ACT Interest Inventory when registering for the exam. Interest profiles for students with the same majors were based on a national sample of undergraduate students with a declared major and a grade point average of at least 2.0.

Although the majority of ACT-tested graduates selected a major that was at least a moderate fit with their interests, only 36 percent selected one that was a good fit, while nearly as many—32 percent—selected a major that was a poor fit with their interests.

“It’s important for students to have the information they need to make the best decisions about their future,” said Jon Erickson, ACT president of education and career solutions. “They should be made aware that choosing a college major that reflects their interests will give them a better chance of succeeding and could also contribute to their satisfaction and happiness in school and on the job.”

Previous ACT research has suggested that students whose interests are similar to those of people in their chosen college majors are more likely to remain in their major, persist in college and complete their degree in a timely manner. Students who change their major while in college may have to take additional courses to satisfy degree requirements or even transfer to a different institution, potentially delaying their graduation.

ACT’s report indicates that a student’s intended major can play a significant role in which college he or she chooses to attend. Half of those students who indicated a planned major reported that the availability of a particular major was the most important factor in selecting a college.

“Students who start out with the right major choice can save significant time and money, which is increasingly important given the rising cost of attending college,” said Erickson. “Far too many colleges require students to select a major without looking at how well the students’ interests fit with their intended program of study.”

The ACT report suggests that students would welcome help with their planning. Around three out of five ACT-tested 2013 graduates indicated that they needed assistance with their educational and occupational plans. Among students who were undecided on a college major, the number indicating that they needed assistance rose to more than seven out of ten.

“We must do more to help students connect their majors and, ultimately, their careers to their interests, so they can be on a path for success,” said Erickson. “ACT offers a number of free resources to help students plan for college and career, and we are working to develop more to help in this area.”

ACT’s free resources include the World-of-Work Map, which is included with every ACT score report, and the new ACT Profile, the first college and career readiness social community. ACT’s website for students, http://www.actstudent.org, offers other free college and career planning resources, including tips, checklists, and information on topics such as academic preparation, choosing a college major, choosing a college, and applying to colleges.

ACT will release the College Choice Report Part 2 in July 2014. http://www.act.org/newsroom/releases/view.php?lang=english&p=3064#.UoUmc3rYZWA.

Moi is not picking on the legal profession, but she is making a point that what might have looked like an optimum career path in past years may not be the path for the future. Dennis Smith has a good brief article at College Recruiter. Com, Choosing A Vocation: Finding Your Calling

“What do you want to do with your life?”

I’ve heard everything from,

“I want to be the VP of Engineering!”, to “I don’t really know what I want to do….I only know what I don’t want to do.”

In my opinion, both answers are good. I’ve known engineers that knew they were going to be engineers from their mother’s womb. I’ve known others who, like myself, enjoy doing so many different things that they graduate from college not having made specific plans for the day after graduation.

In making this decision, the mistake made by many of us is that we too often listen to the multitude of voices that are willing to offer up advice about what “we” should be doing with our lives. As my grandfather used to say, “That advice and a nickel will get you a cup of coffee.

What is it that matters most? What is it that you want to do more than anything? What makes you truly happy? What is it that makes you “alive?

Curt Rosengren says,

“If there’s one thing I’ve discovered over the years, it’s that just about anything we set our minds to is possible. Moreover, one of the biggest – if not the biggest – obstacle we face lies smack dab between our ears. We’re so often overcome with fear of what might go wrong that we don’t dare to even take a step.” “But….what would you do if you were brave?”

Students should be thinking about what is the appropriate life balance for them. http://www.collegerecruiter.com/blog/2006/12/12/choosing-a-vocation-finding-your-calling/

Another important part of career or vocational selection is life balance.

WebMD and the Mayo Clinic have some good suggestions about life balance.

WebMD advises in 5 Tips for Better Work-Life Balance:

1. Figure Out What Really Matters to You in Life

2. Drop Unnecessary Activities

3. Protect Your Private Time

4. Accept Help to Balance Your Life

5. Plan Fun and Relaxation

http://www.webmd.com/health-insurance/protect-health-13/balance-life

The Mayo Clinic has tips for striking the proper work-life balance http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/work-life-balance/WL00056/NSECTIONGROUP=2

A man’s work is nothing but this slow trek to rediscover, through the detours of art, those two or three great and simple images in whose presence his heart first opened.

Albert Camus

After two weeks of working on a project, you know whether it will work or not.

Bill Budge

All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

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I-Best adult education prepares adult education students for employment

5 Nov

Moi wrote in The International Baccalaureate program and vocational students:
There is an “arms race” going on in American Education. More people are asking whether college is the right choice for many. The U.S. has de-emphasized high quality vocational and technical training in the rush to increase the number of students who proceed to college in pursuit of a B.A. Often a graduate degree follows. The Harvard paper, Pathways to Prosperity argues for more high quality vocational and technical opportunities:

The implication of this work is that a focus on college readiness alone does not equip young people with all of the skills and abilities they will need in the workplace, or to successfully complete the transition from adolescence to adulthood. This was highlighted in a 2008 report published by Child Trends, which compared research on the competencies required for college readiness, workplace readiness and healthy youth development. The report found significant overlaps. High personal expectations, self-management, critical thinking, and academic achievement are viewed as highly important for success in all three areas. But the report also uncovered some striking differences. For instance: while career planning, previous work experience, decision making, listening skills, integrity, and creativity are all considered vital in the workplace, they hardly figure in college readiness.
http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news_events/features/2011/Pathways_to_Prosperity_Feb2011.pdf

There is a reluctance to promote vocational opportunities in the U.S. because the is a fear of tracking individuals into vocational training and denying certain groups access to a college education. The comprise could be a combination of both quality technical training with a solid academic foundation. Individuals may have a series of careers over the course of a career and a solid foundation which provides a degree of flexibility is desired for survival in the future. See, Why go to college? https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/why-go-to-college/
https://drwilda.com/2011/11/29/the-international-baccalaureate-program-and-vocational-students/

Kavitha Cardozo of NPR reported in the article, How To Turn Adult Education Into Careers, Quickly:

From The Classroom To The Workplace
Students going through this program are pretty typical of what you’d find in any adult education class across the country. They’ve often dropped out of high school, have low levels of reading and math, many don’t speak English fluently.
Through this program, they can take college-level courses and earn certificates in any of the almost 200 courses offered, from medical billing to welding to building maintenance.
I-BEST programs teach students specific skills that employers value.
Millions of adults who grew up speaking a language other than English are still held back by their language skills..
Students at Shoreline Community College have just finished the theory portion of an auto mechanics class, where they learned about the physics of manual transmissions. Then it’s a quick change into overalls and the hands-on part begins.
This class isn’t child’s play though. Instructor Mark Hankins says students have to learn the complex systems of today’s cars so at the end of the program, “they can go out and do a brake job, they can do fluid replacement, they can do inspections.
“And those are the kind of jobs that there’s a big need for,” he says.
All I-BEST programs have to demonstrate that students can get jobs paying a living wage when they graduate. In most parts of Washington state, that’s $13 an hour.
C.J. Forza says his brain “just clicks with engines.” He dropped out of school in the 12th grade; he’s now 31. He loves cars so much he works part time in a mechanic shop already. Forza’s now learning the “why,” not just the “how,” of repairs.
“Instead of just guessing at what it is, I’m more able to figure out, OK, this issue can be caused by this, this or this,” he says.
Like most adults here, Forza is managing many responsibilities, without much money to hold his life together. But he sticks it out because he can see exactly what the connection is between this class and his career.
At the end of one year, Forza will have a certificate in general auto mechanics and will see his pay jump from $10 an hour to $15.
“I want to be the breadwinner of my family. I have a 3-year-old daughter that I need to raise. I want a career not a job,” he says.
‘Not Everybody Has Bootstraps’
Instructor Hankins says this program really does make a difference.
“I have a student that is now a general manager of a dealership, and I’m sure he’s making two or three times more salary than I am right now,” he says with a laugh.
It can take years before adults in typical adult education programs can take college courses. But what makes I-BEST unusual is that it shortens that time by bypassing the GED exam completely. Students in a Washington state community college program who earn an associate’s degree can receive a high school diploma retroactively.
I-BEST’s Erickson says that when people talk about the program’s success, they often focus on the numbers and the model and the research. But at its heart, she says, I-BEST is about giving people another chance.
“A lot of people will say, ‘Why can’t they just pull themselves up by their bootstraps?’ But not everybody has bootstraps or even boots,” she says.
Erickson says if we can create opportunities to get more people educated and into the workforce, why shouldn’t we?
http://www.npr.org/2013/11/02/241897572/how-to-turn-adult-education-into-careers-quickly?utm_medium=Email&utm_source=share&utm_campaign=

Here is a description of the Washington program from the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges.:

Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training
(I-BEST)
________________________________________
Washington’s Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training Program (I-BEST) is a nationally recognized model that quickly boosts students’ literacy and work skills so that students can earn credentials, get living wage jobs, and put their talents to work for employers.
I-BEST pairs two instructors in the classroom – one to teach professional and technical content and the other to teach basic skills in reading, math, writing or English language – so students can move through school and into jobs faster. As students progress through the program, they learn basic skills in real-world scenarios offered by the job-training part of the curriculum.
I-BEST challenges the traditional notion that students must complete all basic education before they can even start a job-training program. This approach often discourages students because it takes more time, and the stand-alone basic skills classes do not qualify for college credit. I-BEST students start earning college credits immediately.
A Benefit to the Economy
Talent and skills determine the competitive edge in today’s economy, yet one out of every six people in Washington lacks the basic reading, writing and math skills to get living-wage jobs and meet the needs of employers. This segment of Washington’s population is growing quickly at the same time that most jobs now require college experience. By 2019, two-thirds of all new jobs in Washington State will require at least one year of college education.
In order to have a vibrant economy, Washington employers need access to skilled, credentialed workers and all residents need access to opportunities that allow them to earn a living wage.
In Washington’s 34 community and technical colleges, I-BEST pairs workforce training with ABE or ESL so students learn literacy and workplace skills at the same time. Adult literacy and vocational instructors work together to develop and deliver instruction. Colleges provide higher levels of support and student services to address the needs of non-traditional students. There are more than 170 approved programs, expanding each year since the 2006 launch of I-BEST. State Board staff provide colleges with technical assistance and information on best practices to ensure low-income students successfully complete integrated programs and find family wage careers.
Why I-BEST Was Developed
The SBCTC developed Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training (I-BEST) to address the changing needs of employers and students. It tested traditional notions that students must first complete all levels of adult basic education before they can advance in workforce education training programs.
In Washington state, over half of the students come to community and technical colleges with the goal of getting to work. Research showed that students were not transitioning to higher levels of education.
“Only 13 percent of the students who started in ESL programs went on to earn at least some college credits. Less than one-third (30 percent) of adult basic education (ABE/GED) students made the transition to college-level courses. Only four to six percent of either group ended up getting 45 or more college credits or earning a certificate or degree within five years.”
Building Pathways to Success for Low-Skill Adult Students:
Lessons for Community College Policy and Practice
from a Longitudinal Student Tracking Study
(Prince, Jenkins: April 2005).
I-BEST moves students further and faster to certificate and degree completion. As a result, I-BEST was designed to directly transition into college-level programs and help students build skills that will move them forward.
The I-BEST Model
• I-BEST programs must include college-level professional-technical credits that are required of all students in the selected program and are part of a career pathway.
• All students must qualify for federally supported levels of basic skills education.
• Students must be pre-tested using CASAS (the standardized test used statewide to assess ABE and ESL students).
• An instructor from basic skills and an instructor from the professional-technical program must jointly instruct in the same classroom with at least a 50 percent overlap of the instructional time.
• Faculty must develop integrated program outcomes, jointly plan curriculum, and jointly assess student learning and skill development.
• I-BEST programs must appear on the demand list for the local area and meet a minimum set wage.
Questions about I-BEST?
Contact Louisa Erickson, SBCTC, lerickson@sbctc.edu or 360-704-4368.
Top of page
© 2013 Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges.
http://www.sbctc.ctc.edu/college/e_integratedbasiceducationandskillstraining.aspx

There shouldn’t be a one size fits all in education and parents should be honest about what education options will work for a particular child. Even children from the same family may find that different education options will work for each student.

Resources:

Vocational Education Myths and Realities
http://www.fape.org/idea/How_it_works/voced_myths_8.html

Vocational Education in the United States, The Early 1990s
http://nces.ed.gov/pubs/web/95024-2.asp

Related:
The International Baccalaureate program and vocational students https://drwilda.com/2011/11/29/the-international-baccalaureate-program-and-vocational-students/
What is the National Association of Manufacturers ‘Skills Certification’ https://drwilda.com/tag/vocational-education-career-mapping/
Borrowing from work: Schools teach career mapping
https://drwilda.com/2012/03/24/borrowing-from-work-schools-teach-career-mapping/
Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com
Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©
http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©
http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©
https://drwilda.com/

Pew Research: College education increases income potential

1 Oct

Moi wrote about the decision to go to college in Why go to college? Sam Davidson has written an interesting New York Times article, It’s the Economy: The Dwindling Power of a College Degree:

A general guideline these days is that people are rewarded when they can do things that take trained judgment and skill — things, in other words, that can’t be done by computers or lower-wage workers in other countries. Money now flows around the world so quickly, and technology changes so fast, that people who thought they were in high demand find themselves uprooted. Many newspaper reporters have learned that their work was subsidized, in part, by classified ads and now can’t survive the rise of Craigslist; computer programmers have found out that some smart young guys in India will do their jobs for much less. Meanwhile, China lends so much money to the United States that mortgage brokers and bond traders can become richer than they ever imagined for a few years and then, just as quickly, become broke and unemployed.
One of the greatest changes is that a college degree is no longer the guarantor of a middle-class existence. Until the early 1970s, less than 11 percent of the adult population graduated from college, and most of them could get a decent job. Today nearly a third have college degrees, and a higher percentage of them graduated from nonelite schools. A bachelor’s degree on its own no longer conveys intelligence and capability. To get a good job, you have to have some special skill — charm, by the way, counts — that employers value. But there’s also a pretty good chance that by some point in the next few years, your boss will find that some new technology or some worker overseas can replace you.
Though it’s no guarantee, a B.A. or some kind of technical training is at least a prerequisite for a decent salary. It’s hard to see any great future for high-school dropouts or high-school graduates with no technical skills. They most often get jobs that require little judgment and minimal training, like stocking shelves, cooking burgers and cleaning offices. Employers generally see these unskilled workers as commodities — one is as good as any other — and thus each worker has very little bargaining power, especially now that unions are weaker. There are about 40 million of these low-skilled people in our work force. They’re vying for jobs that are likely to earn near the minimum wage with few or no benefits, and they have a high chance of being laid off many times in a career.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/27/magazine/changing-rules-for-success.html?_r=1&emc=eta1

The societal push the last few years has been to have more kids go to college. Quite often schools are ranked on the percentage of kids that go directly to college from high school. So, counselors are following cultural cues they have received from administrators, parents, and the media.

Chris Stout lists Top Five Reasons to Go to College http://ezinearticles.com/?Top-Five-Reasons-Why-You-Should-Choose-To-Go-To-College&id=384395 Stout places the emphasis on the college experience and the fact that college is not just a place for possible career training. Forbes. Com published Five Reasons Not to Go to College http://www.forbes.com/2006/04/15/dont-go-college_cx_lh_06slate_0418skipcollege.html Some people discover their passion earlier in life than others.Forbes.Com addresses its comments at those folks. The calculation is that if one already knows what they want to do, college could be an unnecessary detour. A US News and World Report article estimated the value of a college degree http://www.usnews.com/education/articles/2008/10/30/how-much-is-that-college-degree-really-worth

Amanda Paulson of the Christian Science Monitor wrote a great article, Does Everyone Need A College Degree? Maybe Not Says Harvard Study about a Harvard study.

A new report released by Harvard Wednesday states in some of the strongest terms yet that such a “college for all” emphasis may actually harm many American students – keeping them from having a smooth transition from adolescence to adulthood and a viable career.
“The American system for preparing young people to lead productive and prosperous lives as adults is clearly badly broken,” concludes the report, “Pathways to Prosperity” (pdf). http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news_events/features/2011/Pathways_to_Prosperity_Feb2011.pdf
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Education/2011/0202/Does-everyone-need-a-college-degree-Maybe-not-says-Harvard-study

Marcus Wohlsen of AP has posted the article, Tech Mogul Pays Bright Minds Not to Go to College at Boston.Com. http://www.boston.com/business/technology/articles/2011/05/30/tech_mogul_pays_bright_minds_to_skip_college/ Wohlsen reports that tech tycoon Peter Thiel has set up a scholarship which two dozen gifted young people $100,000 not to go to college but to become entrepreneurs for the next two years. https://drwilda.com/2011/11/28/why-go-to-college/
Pew Research reported that college graduates make more income for a number of reasons.

Richard Fry wrote about the income potential of college graduates in The growing economic clout of the college educated:

For the first time on record, households headed by someone with at least a bachelor’s degree received nearly a majority (49.7%) of aggregate U.S. household income; nearly one out of every two dollars went to the college educated. In 2012 one-in-three households was college educated, so, put another way, half of the aggregate U.S. income goes to one third of the households.
In 1991 (the earliest year comparable figures are available) college-educated households only received 37% of the nation’s aggregate income. In 1991 about one-quarter of households (23%) were college educated.
The share of the income pie received by households with only a high school education or less fell 15 percentage points from 1991 to 2012. The share of household income going to households with some college (including those with an associate’s degree) increased modestly over the same period (23% to 25%).
Since educational attainment has risen and there are more college-educated households, one would expect the college educated to receive a growing share of the pie.
But the data clearly indicate that the growing economic fortunes of the college educated go beyond sheer numbers. College-educated households are the only households whose incomes have grown on a per household basis from 1991 to 2012. Household income increased 9% (from $92,289 to $100,637) for those whose highest education was a bachelor’s degree. Incomes were up 20% for households with professional degrees. In contrast, household incomes have declined for households who do not have at least a bachelor’s degree.
Before breaking down the nitty-gritty of the college-educated households’ income gain, it should be noted that a number of factors are likely at play in boosting the household incomes of the college educated relative to less-educated households. A primary factor is the better fortunes of the college educated in the labor market. The Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce finds that college graduates earn nearly twice as much as workers with just a high school diploma.
But the household income differences between the college educated and lesser educated go beyond the labor market. College-educated households are more likely to be married and thus more likely to have secondary earners contributing to household income.

In addition, my research on “assortative mating” or “who marries whom” shows that married college-educated persons are more likely to have a college-educated spouse. Thus, they are more likely to have a spouse with high earnings. For example, in 2011, 75% of married men ages 30 to 44 who are college educated also have a college-educated wife. Among their married counterparts with a high school education, only 17% have a college-educated wife.
Between 1991 and 2012, the aggregate household income of college-educated households increased by $2.1 trillion according to the Census data. Over the same period, the share of all households who are college educated increased from 23% to 33%. How much of the $2.1 trillion income gain received by the college educated is due to growth in numbers versus growth in income per college-educated household? If the fraction of households who are college educated had remained constant at 23%, instead of rising to 33%, the income pie going to the college educated would only have grown by $0.8 trillion. So, over half of the income gain of the college educated is due growth in numbers. But a substantial portion reflects their improving income fortunes. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/09/24/the-growing-economic-clout-of-the-college-educated/

Whether a person chooses to attend a four year college after high school is a very personal decision and there is no one right answer. One thing the current economic climate has taught many is there are no guarantees in life, even with a college degree. The trades may offer some a means to earn a living and a fulfilling life.

A one-size-fits-all approach does not work.

Resources:

1. A publication by the government Why Attend College? Is a good overview
http://www2.ed.gov/pubs/Prepare/pt1.html

2. Article in USA Today about gap year
http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/education/2008-06-18-gap-year_N.htm

3. Advantages of Going to a Vocational School
http://www.gocollege.com/options/vocational-trade-schools/

4. Accredidation Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology
http://www.accsc.org/Resources/Links.aspx

5. The Federal Trade Commission has Choosing A Career Or Vocational School
http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0241-choosing-vocational-school

6. How to Choose The Best Trade School
http://www.ehow.com/how_2107557_choose-best-trade-school.html

Where information leads to Hope. © Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

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http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

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http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

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‘Dual education’ is coming to America

3 Jun

The Economist story Ein neuer Deal? Germany’s vaunted dual-education system is its latest export hit describes Germany’s dual education system:

URSULA VON DER LEYEN, Germany’s labour minister, likes to point out that the two European Union countries with the lowest unemployment, especially among the young, have dual-education systems: Austria and Germany. Like Switzerland, they have a tradition of combining apprenticeships with formal schooling for the young “so that education is always tied to demand,” she says. When youths graduate, they often have jobs to walk into.

With youth unemployment in Germany and Austria below 8% against 56% in Spain and 38% in Italy, Mrs von der Leyen has won Europe’s attention. Germany recently signed memoranda with Greece, Italy, Latvia, Portugal, Slovakia and Spain to help set up vocational-education systems. Mrs von der Leyen discussed the topic in visits to Madrid in May and to Paris this week. There is even talk of a “new deal” for Europe, including bringing youths from crisis-hit countries to work in Germany and making more loans.

Germany is best known in euro-zone countries for its macroeconomic prescriptions of austerity and structural reform. So it helps politically that it should now be seen assisting people in those countries into jobs. But does its dual-education system deserve so much credit, and should other countries adopt it?

Although based on older traditions, it formally dates from 1969. Youths not interested in, or qualified for, university sign up for a programme in which they work three or four days a week for a firm that pays them and teaches relevant skills. The rest of the time they spend in school, completing mostly specialised courses. Chambers of commerce and industry associations make sure that the work and the teaching are matched. After three years or so, trainees are certified and, if they make a good impression, may stay as full-time workers.

About two in three young Germans go through this system and into about 350 careers. Some end up in blue-collar jobs, others in sales and marketing, shipping and agriculture, or pharmacology and accounting. The practical nature of the education is an advantage, as is the mutual screening between potential employers and employees during training.

Yet the system existed in the 1990s, when Germany was the “sick man of Europe” and had high unemployment. German success today surely owes more to its labour-market and welfare reforms of a decade ago and to unions’ wage restraint. In an ageing and shrinking population, demography also helps, as fewer German graduates choose among more open jobs.

Ludger Wössmann, an economist at the Ifo Institute in Munich, suggests that vocational education can have bad side effects. In his research, countries that combined school and work-based education (Germany, Austria, Denmark and Switzerland) did much better at getting young people into jobs. But early training can turn into a disadvantage by the age of 50. It appears that skills learnt in vocational training “become obsolete at a faster rate.” Low youth unemployment today may thus come at the cost of higher old-age unemployment tomorrow.

Related topics

The Career Technical Education Foundation (CTEF) has a good synopsis of “dual education.”

In Dual System of Education, CTEF explains:

What is the dual system of education supported by industry for career academies with an internship/apprenticeship model?  Two partners share the responsibility for education and training.  The Career Academy assumes the responsibility for teaching the required curriculum content including theory and practical application.  Industry provides the career academy financial support and the training necessary to familiarize the trainee with the technological and organizational aspects of the work processes within the company.

Advantages of the Dual System for the Industry partner:

  • Secures the skilled labor needed

  • Reduces the costs to train for positions within the company

  • Increases motivation and loyalty to the company

  • Trainee receives job specific qualifications

  • Productive performance of trainee

Advantages of the Dual System for the Student:

  • Recognized Industry Certification

  • Increased prospects for employment upon completion

  • Theory and practical application of curriculum

  • Certain degree of independence through an “earn while you learn” program

Financing of the Dual System of Education and Training

  • Industry partners who provide training contribute the largest share

  • Perkins and other District funding as available from State and Federal Agencies Grants

  • Dual System of Education and Training provides the opportunity for the successful Career Academy Graduate to:

    • Earn Industry Certification and/or

    • Earn college credit upon successful completion of each course while attending the Career Academy

    • Apply to the University of their choice
      or

    • Earn Industry Certification

    • Enter gainful employment either with their own training company or another company

    • Continue education process by:

      • Working with the training company 3.5 days/week

      • Attending University or Continuing Education facility 1.5 days/week with company assistance where needed until coursework completed.

To read more please visit the Executive Summary Page

http://careertechedfoundation.org/workforce-development/dual-system-of-education/

As with any education system, there are advantages and disadvantages.

The 2006 article, Dual system is singular success which was published in Times Higher Education reports:

For all its success, the policy is not without its problems. As in Britain, universities were at first loath to recognise an alternative form of higher education. They have been reluctant to give adequate recognition to AMK graduates on university masters programmes.

Employers are anxious about an oversupply of graduates, and they and others claim that some aspects of technical and vocational education are neglected. The relationship with the municipalities and regions is not always smooth, and there is a high dropout rate.

Maintaining a dual system in Finland has been made more difficult by the success of the policy and of the Bologna Process. When AMKs were established, they were the only institutions that offered bachelors degrees; since Bologna, most Finnish universities do. AMKs now also offer masters programmes, although they are mostly part-time schemes for mature students. But some universities are also entering this market. The dual system is thus challenged by “vocational drift”. The challenge for the polytechnics – and for the Government – is to maintain the distinction between the broad aims of the two sectors while recognising that a difference of purpose does not necessarily imply a difference of status. http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/206872.article

The United States is also looking a different education formats.

Moi wrote in The International Baccalaureate program and vocational students:

There is an “arms race” going on in American Education. More people are asking whether college is the right choice for many. The U.S. has de-emphasized high quality vocational and technical training in the rush to increase the number of students who proceed to college in pursuit of a B.A. Often a graduate degree  follows. The Harvard paper, Pathways to Prosperity argues for more high quality vocational and technical opportunities:

The implication of this work is that a focus on college readiness alone does not equip young people with all of

the skills and abilities they will need in the workplace, or to successfully complete the transition from adolescence

to adulthood. This was highlighted in a 2008 report published by Child Trends, which compared research on the competencies required for college readiness, workplace readiness and healthy youth development. The report found significant overlaps. High personal expectations, self-management, critical thinking, and academic achievement are viewed as highly important for success in all three areas. But the report also uncovered some striking differences. For instance: while career planning, previous work experience, decision making, listening skills, integrity, and creativity are all considered vital in the workplace, they hardly figure in college readiness.http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news_events/features/2011/Pathways_to_Prosperity_Feb2011.pdf

There is a reluctance to promote vocational opportunities in the U.S. because the is a fear of tracking individuals into vocational training and denying certain groups access to a college education. The comprise could be a combination of both quality technical training with a solid academic foundation. Individuals may have a series of careers over the course of a career and a solid foundation which provides a degree of flexibility is desired for survival in the future. See, Why go to college? https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/why-go-to-college/

Michael Alison Chandler is reporting in the Washington Post story, New college-prep IB program could be offered to technical students about giving vocational students the opportunity to participate in the International Baccalaureate program. http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/education/new-college-prep-ib-program-could-be-offered-to-technical-students/2011/11/21/gIQAareS6N_story.html

https://drwilda.com/2011/11/29/the-international-baccalaureate-program-and-vocational-students/

There shouldn’t be a one size fits all in education and parents should be honest about what education options will work for a particular child. Even children from the same family may find that different education options will work for each child.

Resources:

Vocational Education Myths and Realities

http://www.fape.org/idea/How_it_works/voced_myths_8.html

Vocational Education in the United States, The Early 1990s

http://nces.ed.gov/pubs/web/95024-2.asp

Where information leads to Hope. ©  Dr. Wilda.com

Dr. Wilda says this about that ©

Blogs by Dr. Wilda:

COMMENTS FROM AN OLD FART©                           http://drwildaoldfart.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda Reviews ©                                                http://drwildareviews.wordpress.com/

Dr. Wilda ©                                                                                      https://drwilda.com/

What is the National Association of Manufacturers ‘Skills Certification’

20 May

Moi wrote in The International Baccalaureate program and vocational students:

There is an “arms race” going on in American Education. More people are asking whether college is the right choice for many. The U.S. has de-emphasized high quality vocational and technical training in the rush to increase the number of students who proceed to college in pursuit of a B.A. Often a graduate degree  follows. The Harvard paper, Pathways to Prosperity argues for more high quality vocational and technical opportunities:

The implication of this work is that a focus on college readiness alone does not equip young people with all of

the skills and abilities they will need in the workplace, or to successfully complete the transition from adolescence

to adulthood. This was highlighted in a 2008 report published by Child Trends, which compared research on the competencies required for college readiness, workplace readiness and healthy youth development. The report found significant overlaps. High personal expectations, self-management, critical thinking, and academic achievement are viewed as highly important for success in all three areas. But the report also uncovered some striking differences. For instance: while career planning, previous work experience, decision making, listening skills, integrity, and creativity are all considered vital in the workplace, they hardly figure in college readiness.

http://www.gse.harvard.edu/news_events/features/2011/Pathways_to_Prosperity_Feb2011.pdf

There is a reluctance to promote vocational opportunities in the U.S. because the is a fear of tracking individuals into vocational training and denying certain groups access to a college education. The comprise could be a combination of both quality technical training with a solid academic foundation. Individuals may have a series of careers over the course of a career and a solid foundation which provides a degree of flexibility is desired for survival in the future. See, Why go to college?https://drwilda.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/why-go-to-college/

https://drwilda.com/2011/11/29/the-international-baccalaureate-program-and-vocational-students/

Now, there is a new program in community colleges. According to the NAM site, NAM-Endorsed Manufacturing Skills Certification System:

Close the Skills Gap! Take Action Now!

  • 82% of manufacturers report a moderate or serious shortage in skilled production workers.

  • 75% of manufacturers say the skill shortage has negatively impacted their ability to expand.

  • 600,000 jobs in manufacturing are unfilled today because employers can’t find workers with the right skills.

To help close the growing skills gap, the Manufacturing Institute has launched the NAM-Endorsed Manufacturing Skills Certification System.  This system of nationally portable, industry-recognized credentials validates both the “book smarts” and the “street smarts” needed to be productive and successful on the job.  For more information, see the following sections:

Manufacturers can no longer afford to wait.  Each manufacturer must take action NOW to help grow the next generation of manufacturing talent.  Learn more about the NAM-Endorsed Skills Certification System and how it can make a difference in your workplace! http://www.themanufacturinginstitute.org/Skills-Certification/Skills-Certification.aspx

The Adult College Completion Network describes the program in Manufacturing Skills Certification System

This effort allows 12 states to align their educational and career pathways with a nationally-recognized skills certification system.

Description: 

The project is supporting 12 states to join five current states (North Carolina, Ohio, Texas, Washington, Indiana) that are leading efforts to align their educational and career pathways with the National Association of Manufacturers-endorsed Manufacturing Skills Certification System. The states in the project were scheduled to begin implementation over a four-year period; however, during year one there was such demand from manufacturers for action that the Institute initiated efforts in all the states. The states are: Florida, Connecticut, Wisconsin, Iowa, New York, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Nevada, Illinois, Tennessee, and Kansas. The project is scaling up the model to align stackable industry-recognized skills certifications in advanced manufacturing with educational degree pathways that span from high school to community colleges to four-year institution programs of study.

Expected Outcomes: 

  • Increase in the number of students who earn a postsecondary credential with value in the workplace.

  • Creation/validation industry-aligned postsecondary pathways with advanced manufacturing career pathways, using real-time data on each state’s economy map.

  • Mapping the Advanced Manufacturing educational pathways in the states.

  • Integration of industry credentials into early adopter postsecondary institutions’ programs of study.

  • Modularization of the college curriculum to shorten time to credentials and provide more on/off-ramps in postsecondary education.

  • Strengthening of employer engagement with education.

  • Creation of a community of learners among states to share best-in-class tools to facilitate implementation.

Contact

Brent Weil

Senior Vice President

202-637-3134

Location

1331 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Suite 600

Washington, DC 20004

United States

http://adultcollegecompletion.org/content/manufacturing-skills-certification-system

There shouldn’t be a one size fits all in education and parents should be honest about what education options will work for a particular child. Even children from the same family may find that different education options will work for each child.

Resources:

Vocational Education Myths and Realities

http://www.fape.org/idea/How_it_works/voced_myths_8.html

Vocational Education in the United States, The Early 1990s

http://nces.ed.gov/pubs/web/95024-2.asp

Related:

The IB Career-related Certificate (IBCC)                                       https://drwilda.com/2012/06/28/the-ib-career-related-certificate-ibcc/

Borrowing from work: Schools teach career mapping                 https://drwilda.com/2012/03/24/borrowing-from-work-schools-teach-career-mapping/

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