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February 15, 2019

How Community Colleges teach job skills


I just watched Mike Rowe's latest show (you may know him from "Dirty Jobs") and he was presenting his case about the importance of young people learning job skills. And I agree with him, but he seems to think that high school is the place for that. And I beg to differ with him on that point.

Speaking for myself, I really don't remember learning much in high school. At that age I was still pretty much of a wild animal, and thoughts of learning a job skill really hadn't even entered my little brain. And I was a pretty good student! The skills that I learned to prepare myself for a job didn't happen until I was out of high school, and had begun college.

Now waitaminute, if you're picturing me walking onto a big campus, you're seeing the wrong thing. I started at a Community College, which were called Junior Colleges back then. And at age 19, I was ready to start learning job skills.

Your local Community College is still doing a great job teaching job skills, from welding to graphic design. If you've missed that, I'm so sorry, but it's not too late to find out about it.

Go there, and take a class. Sign up for welding, or something. Community Colleges aren't the "ivy league" useless colleges that just give pieces of paper (degrees) and say, "Good luck!", Community Colleges teach valuable skills. And most of those classes are taught by people who worked in the industry, not just people with fancy degrees. I know, because I became one of those teachers.

Somewhere along the line, people have gotten the wrong idea about what they need to prepare themselves for success in life. A fancy degree, with no useful skills, is just something to hang on the wall. If you want to be successful in life, and earn a living, you're wise to learn a job skill. And don't let me tell you what it should be - it could be nursing, it could be welding. Heck, you might even like to begin a career in computer graphics (that's my specialty)!

I'm proud of having gone to a Community College, and proud to have been a teacher at one. I learned useful job skills there, and I also taught them. If you think that this kind of thing isn't happening, you need to look again.

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