Editorial: Presidential programs aim to prepare students for the future

Last month, two job training programs were unveiled by the White house that focus on putting community college students to work. The money for these programs is a part of the $2 billion workforce development fund created back in 2010. According to Inside Higher Ed, these programs are also “designed to create partnerships that last after the grants dry up.” President Obama and Vice President Biden spoke about these programs at a community college near Pittsburgh, PA, and both stressed the importance of job training in today’s world.

Another focus of these programs is creating apprenticeships, something that has been declining steadily. A study done by the United States Department of Labor shows that 288,000 apprenticeships were filled last year, which was 200,000 fewer than the year before. Considering apprenticeships are aimed to give college credit for work experience, these numbers are staggering. The main areas of focus for creating apprenticeships are technology, healthcare, and advanced manufacturing. These areas seem to be the focus of the American economy in the future, so gaining the work experience now will pay off for all of us.

What makes these programs interesting is what they can potentially do for community college students looking to get into the working world. The programs also work with community colleges to become more creative with their own career services programs. This is something that can be tremendously helpful here at Skyline.

As college students, with or without jobs, we should constantly look to something bigger and better. With these programs, they are setting up students to have careers, not just temporary jobs. Once these programs go into effect, it is up to us to take advantage of this great opportunity. While you may be comfortable with that job that is paying you bills and all of your expenses at this point, strive for a better long term option, a career.