Misconception on Four-Year College Degree

A letter posted in the The Gazette to the Colorado Spring’s City Council caught my Collaboration is everything.attention.  The letter began with this opening sentence, “Our society, including government and media, has performed a major disservice to our students by perpetuating the misconception that a four-year college degree is an essential component for success.”  Further into the article the writer goes on to share a very realistic and supportive statistic to this sentence, “A 2013 report from Georgetown University noted 65 percent of job openings through the year 2020 will require education past high school, yet only about half of those jobs need a four-year degree.” The statistic emphasizes not only the importance of collaboration between education and industry, but the importance of promoting accurate information to the available career pathways for students following high school. No longer are the days that guidance counselors are able to truly know the students on their case load.  With guidance counselor to student ratio reaching 471 to 1, with the recommendation from the American School Counselor Association being 250 to 1, it is important for teachers, parents and all other influence to students to be familiar with ALL the options available post-secondary.  An excellent resource to identify resources in each state would be the CTE In Your State tool located on the National Association of State Directors of Career
Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc) website.  The interactive tools allows an individual to evaluate enrollment data, funding, accountability indicators, state contact information for not only post secondary, but adult CTE within each state.

George Matthew Adams, an American newspaper columnist, put it well, “You are your greatest investment. The more you store in that mind of yours, the more you enrich your experience, the more people you meet, the more books you read, and the more places you visit, the greater is that investment in all that you are. Everything that you add to your peace of mind, and to your outlook upon life, is added capital that no one but yourself can dissipate.”  Advocating for CTE curriculum is more than providing knowledge to assist in fostering student success, but a resource and tool for our society’s economy.

Sources: American School Counselor Association: http://www.schoolcounselor.org/asca/media/asca/home/ratios10-11.pdf
Entire letter can be found here: LETTERS: Four-year degree not only answer; letter to City Council
Adams Quote: http://thoughts.forbes.com/thoughts/quotes/knowledge


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