There is a myth in our culture that all high school graduates must attend college. This is a topic that gets introduced to them in middle school and then pounded into them once they reach high school. This is a problem that needs to be addressed. Schools are not talking to students about the other options that are out there, and this leaves them in the dark over other respectable vocational or employment opportunities. As a society, it is our responsibility along with the schools’ educators to recognize our children's strong and weak points and steer them in the direction that best suits their abilities.
Our world would not be a better place if all of us were to become white collar professionals.
There is a great demand for skilled blue collar workers in the fields of framing, sheet rocking, plumbing, and electrical work. Part of the reluctance to seek vocational training is the ego-driven feeling that such work is beneath white collar work. This is nonsense because these craftsmen are as professional and as needed as white collar college graduates.
There are several advantages about going into trade school or an apprenticeship program over a traditional four-year college. First, there is the cost savings. It is going to cost you less money to go to a trade or apprenticeship program. Some apprenticeship programs may even pay for all of your schooling. Second, you will be doing a great deal of hands-on learning. This is valuable experience that employers like and is not done in the traditional college setting. Third, most of your teachers have spent time working in the field that they are teaching. You will be applying your classroom knowledge to real world situations while learning from someone who has real world experience, which is far more valuable than learning from someone who has just had classroom instruction.
It is amazing to me that these programs and others are rarely advertised to our graduating high school students. Students have always been told “If you don't go to college, you will be working at a fast food place or joining the military.” We need to get our children’s educators out of this mind-set and advertise these programs along with going to college in order to give our children all available resources to reach their full potential the best way they see fit.
There is no such thing as work being inferior. Each job has within its experiences the seeds to teach our young people about the real world and how it works. Working can provide you with valuable experience, and you may have a greater chance of moving up within the company if you are dedicated and motivated.