Do all of our young adults need to go to a college or university and receive a degree?

I believe the answer is no.  Everyone is not suited for the college experience or will actually gain much from it.  Many experts in the educational field believe we are creating a glut of people with college degrees and some of those young adults did not need that college degree to fill the good paying job opportunities that are out there and awaiting them.  In fact we have too many young adults who graduate from a college or university and never get a job in their degreed field or any field that pays enough to offset the cost of a degree.

Governor Snyder wants to fill Michigan’s talent gap in those job opportunities that do not need a college degree with what he calls the Marshall Plan.

He states in that Marshall Plan that:

  • There will be 811,055 high-demand career openings through 2024
  • $49,094,842,059 in potential earnings in 2024

His desire is to fund $100 million dollars’ worth of scholarships, career counseling, teacher grants and career-oriented programs within high schools, to help this students prepare them for jobs that are better suited for them.  His goal is to sustain a collaboration between the education and business sectors for jobs in professional trade, information technology and other high-demand fields.

Governor Snyder was quoted in an AP story published in the Chicago Tribune saying:

Employers and educators need to keep talking to each other…Let's revolutionize education so learning is a lifelong achievement of knowledge and success.

This sounds like a very good idea to help Michigan teenagers who do not believe that they want to attain a college degree for what they want to do with their lives.  If believe that they do not want to go to a college or university because it is not for them or they will not get out of it the cost and time it will take to attain a degree.

The Director of the Michigan Department of Talent and Economic Development, Roger Curtis was quoted in that article referring to Michigan not being chosen for Amazon’s second headquarters stating:

There will be another one that's going to be the size and scope of Amazon…We need to be better prepared from a talent standpoint to show that company, whoever it is, that, 'Yes, you can come to Michigan.

As what happens with many of these issues not all educational experts agree.

The President of the Ann Arbor-based think tank Michigan Future Inc., Lou Glazer, believes the this Marshall plan is not the best way forward.  He believes that the “broad critical thinking and communication skillset” that young adults achieve from a four-year college education is the best protection against the constantly changing job market.  He was quoted in that article saying:

If you're a good welder, but you got broader skills when welding becomes automated, that's fine," he said. "If you don't have it, you're in trouble. The same thing is going to happen with coding.

What are your thoughts?

Not everyone is college material and only us parents and our children can really know and determine that.  So it sounds like this may be a great option for our children.

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