Certificates fail to guarantee jobs

High unemployment across the nation is leading to an increase in students seeking career and technical education certificates in a variety of fields to increase employment opportunities, but a new study finds that certificate programs are often leaving students unprepared for the workforce.

With the economy still in recovery from the 2008 crash, many people have started enrolling in certificate programs, seeking to get the hands on training they need for many jobs and graduate quickly, but people with certificates, ranging from medical assistants to auto technicians are often finding difficulties getting employed in the field they were trained for.

Studies have shown that career oriented certificates are often not as helpful as the claim to be, mostly at for-profit colleges. For example, some students say that they are back in school when they were promised job placement in the previous school that certified them, leading to a sense of betrayal.

“I don’t regret the experience, nor do I hate the instructors who helped me get certified at Heald years ago, but I do feel like the institution took my money and didn’t help me land a job,” Juan Mercado said.

Technical schools are facing further troubles, due to their recruiting of veterans who use their G.I. bill for certificate programs and wind up with no guarantee of a job after. The practice benefits the schools both economically and in helping the schools to fill their student quota.

Despite higher fees, for-profit technical colleges and non-profit community colleges provide nearly identical training. One appeal of certificate programs is that they meet the needs for the real world training. However, having an education after the certificate program can give the students more opportunity to adapt and gain more knowledge.

“Certificate programs have to offer the skill that the job market needs, so there isn’t much room…(compared to) someone who goes to college they have more time to adjust but in the Certificate Programs they have to be kind of good when they get out,” Kathleen De Azenedo Feinblum said.

Both profit and non-profit schools deal with a lot of students in C.T.E. Programs, but the schools can only provide the training and must part ways with students after graduation, leaving them responsible for beginning their career.

“Your on your own in the real world and you don’t have that safety net” Kym Jackson said.