Good Trade Careers: A Critique Essay Example

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Education, Vocation, Students, Economics, Training, United States, America, Sociology

Pages: 3

Words: 825

Published: 2020/11/11

Trade and vocational education and careers have long been ignored in America's race for a better after-high school education, primarily college education. Recent enrollments and inclinations show, however, an increasing number of students are opting for vocational education. Given how more job and career opportunities are being rolled out as more and more baby boomers are retiring, high school graduates are considering careers in trade as promising employment prospects. Therefore, more high school graduates are receiving vocational training in order to join a workforce which requires more highly skilled workers. According to some experts, investing in vocational education and training should been a priority and should not have been ignored since A Nation at Risk report's dire warning of America's declining educational system, which prompted educators and parents like to focus and prepare students for a four-year college education, rather than diversifying post-high school education. This is, in fact, an interesting argument. However, America's educational and work needs should not always be swayed one way or another based on passing economy recovery signs. This critique aims, hence, to examine pro-vocational education and training.
Ironically, A Nation at Risk report was a warning sign, several years ago, against a declining American educational system and a foreboding prediction of how America could lose world leadership if educational standards continued to slip. Now, given recent economic recovery signs advocates of vocational education and training are sprouting everywhere. True, vocational education and training is an important part of any educational system and should be well placed within a broader, national strategy. However, response to America's needs should not be based on short-sighted economic recovery or declining signs. The case for a Millennial-oriented vocational education and training – given how Millennials of all workforce segments have suffered most in recent years against a Great Recession hitting every sector of America's economy since 2008 – is, indeed, a reactionary attitude and should be better placed in perspective.
Intuitively, high skilled jobs – as opposed to conventional low-paid, blue collar jobs – are now a given of any strong, knowledge-based economy. Yet, in order to prepare for a truly educated and highly skilled, vocational workforce, educational and training programs should be created, designed and delivered such as not to fill in missing gaps, real or imagined, in an economy but to be integral to a comprehensive, long-range strategy which fulfills not only present and urgent economic – and, for that matter, political needs – but also social and cultural needs. Indeed, as America's population is witnessing dramatic shifts in demographic distributions, needs for vocational education and training are becoming more and more pressing but for reasons which are not restricted to economic ones.
Conventionally, college education has been viewed as a means and mark of social mobility and status. The federal programs sponsoring higher education have early one emphasized a mobility based on kind of education, not of broader needs for education. Unsurprisingly, baby boomers – a generation which has benefited most of government-sponsored educational programs – are being viewed as a generation who has contributed most to America's economic rise and boom in decades. This is a largely valid but not a necessarily sound argument.
That higher education is essential for economic success and prosperity is valid a premise. However, economic success – let alone social and cultural needs – is not if and only if dependent on higher education. Similarly, vocational education and training is not in an if-and-only-if relationship with economy, let alone social and cultural needs. That premise of "we basically obliterated the modernization of the old vocational education programs and they've been set aside" is, indeed, an unsound one because underling claim is economic-oriented. Thus, only by embracing a broader conception of vocational education and training could both college and vocational education be adequately placed within a fulfilling national strategy of education. Consider, for example, millions of Hispanics and Asians now U.S. citizens. Most Latin American and Asian immigrants hail from cultural backgrounds which do, indeed, promote vocational education and "hand labor". This, if considered for, should make vocational education and training well strategized for culturally. Socially, as well, if vocational education and training becomes more acceptable by investing more in highly skilled jobs, college education would not be viewed, socially, as higher in status and conducive to more income in mid and long ranges. Put differently, by investing in vocational education and training as a vehicle for economic structural modifications – instead of other way round – and, ultimately, for social change and cross-sectional – as opposed to vertical – mobility, post-high school education and training would be revolutionized not only for Millennials – only a segment of American society – but also for Americans at large.
In conclusion, recent growing support for vocational education and training emphasizes such education at college education. This is, in fact, a reactionary response given response to education in general should not be economic-based but should be more holistic such as to incorporate social and cultural factors as well. As America's demographics show, social and cultural factors should be considered for as needs and requirements for all education – vocational and college – differ not only across age groups but also across social and cultural ones.

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WePapers. (2020, November, 11) Good Trade Careers: A Critique Essay Example. Retrieved May 22, 2022, from
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"Good Trade Careers: A Critique Essay Example," Free Essay Examples -, 11-Nov-2020. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 22-May-2022].
Good Trade Careers: A Critique Essay Example. Free Essay Examples - Published Nov 11, 2020. Accessed May 22, 2022.

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