This past weekend I had a long conversation with my nephew regarding college versus trade school. The interaction caused me to start thinking about what it is about our public education system that pushes newly graduated students into thinking that without a bachelor’s degree they have no future. Some of the best visionaries in the last 100 years either had no degree or dropped out before achieving their degree yet they made a life for themselves none the less.
While there are some “out there” ideas as to why education is failing yet getting more expensive, I think the reason is much simpler and sinister in nature. Higher education has become a mechanism in the machine that keeps those that threaten the wealthy from ever getting themselves out of debt to make a difference. The idea of wealth inequality has taken root making it necessary to protect fortunes at all costs.
My nephew is an extremely talented welder, to the point where he’s written his own ticket to be successful at anything he wants to do in the field. His mother on the other hand, is forcing him to go to a 4-year college to obtain a Bachelors so that he has something to fall back on if he decides that welding isn’t what he wants to do for a career. She didn’t graduate high school when she was younger, obtained her GED much later in life and never went to college and probably couldn’t go to college even if she wanted to. Forcing her son to do something he’s not cut out for is setting him up to fail. It could be that she wants him to not make the same mistakes she made. It could be that she wants him to be successful and she believes a bachelors will do that. It could be that she doesn’t want him to move away and leave her alone. There are multiple plausible reasons.
There is another plausible theory though. She has ingested the kool-aid lock, stock and barrel that a bachelor’s degree is the only way to succeed. Forcing her son to attend a 4-year college, go into tens of thousands of debt and struggle his entire life is apparently the new American dream. Asking him flat-out what he wanted to do, not what his mother wants him to do, he said he wants to go to a technical trade school. It’s faster, cheaper and is almost guaranteed a job once he obtains his certification. This country is in serious trouble and will be facing a massive lack of skilled tradesmen in a time when our countries infrastructure will need it most. He knows a 4-year college isn’t the right choice yet he has resisted thinking that his mother is right.
When you drive over a bridge, do you think about the welder that joined the steel and his bachelors degree or do you think about whether he had the skill needed to do it right? When you ride up an elevator in a skyscraper, do you think about whether the elevator installer had a bachelors degree or whether he had the right certifications to do the job right? Architects need higher education degrees, with its precision math. Welders, electricians, pipe fitters, steel workers, etc. need technical certifications. The idea that everyone needs a higher education degree to be remotely successful is a huge conspiracy forced on all of by the wealthy elite.