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The stupid, it burns.

No, what's happened is that we've conflated trade schools with universities. Mostly the fault of a middle income group pretending to be middle class and wanting all the middle class trimmings. Oh, and businesses want those new minions fully formed employees who they, in theory, don't have to train how to do their jobs.

The whole vocational training sector here has been elevated to university status and the universities have been required to become vocational training services. Just in case they'd encourage anyone to accidentally think a thought. Which is what happens when your country is run by people who qualified as school teachers so they'd have a secure fallback in case the whole political career didn't work out.

by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Mon Dec 17th, 2012 at 01:06:56 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Right, but the practical problem is that new graduates with degrees in Chemical Engineering can go to work for ExxonMobil or BP and make $100,000 the first year out of school. Ditto the finance majors who go to Wall Street. Then there is a tail of electrical/civil/computer/mechanical engineers who might start in the neighorhood of $50,000, and then qualified schoolteachers (it is not as easy as falling off a log to get a high school teaching job) starting at $25,000. Then an even longer tail of Philosophy, Sociology, Classics, Women's Studies, and Kinetic Motion majors who are unable to find a job of any sort.

How do you convince Shell to hire a Modern Dance major?

When I was in college, I was able to make $2300 in a summer--exactly the cost of tuition and living expenses for a year. At my first job, I made $8000. Nowadays, the price of school is up by a factor of ten, to around $23,000, but there are very few jobs available where you start at $80,000. Engineering, finance, law, physician...

by asdf on Mon Dec 17th, 2012 at 01:45:35 PM EST
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Dito. My first 'professional' job was as a teacher in a private school and I made something under $6,000. The next year I made something over $6,000. (To get a decent salary required working in the public school system, which required a teaching certificate.) This was for 10 months work. But this was 1967 and I could rent a one bedroom apartment in Santa Monica, five blocks downhill to the beach, for $67/mo. Hell, unemployment paid about $67/week at that time. And, because I was teaching, the payments on my ~$2000 student loan were deferred or forgiven, can't remember which. It is a totally different and worse world today for recent grads.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon Dec 17th, 2012 at 10:23:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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