Preparing students with transferable skills for a global society, often stated as 21s t Century skills.

“We’ve got millions of people looking for work and millions of jobs nobody wants. College graduates are a trillion dollars in debt and struggling to find employment in their field of study. Meanwhile, 88 percent of all available jobs don’t require a four-year degree. They require specific training. So what do we do? We push a four-year degree like it’s some sort of a golden ticket. We remove vocational education from high schools at the time we need it most. We’re lending money we don’t have to kids who can’t pay it back, educating them for jobs that no longer exist. I’m no expert, but I’d say that’s profoundly disconnected”

Mike Rowe to Bill Maher on Real Time

Technology Education provides students with authentic problem solving and reasoning skills that are ideally suited for performance based assessments. Trades-related careers are among the highest paying jobs in America often offering long-term security and advancement opportunities. The United States has developed an overwhelming skills gap over the past three decades with most families believing a college or university education is required for success. Studies show that careers with a short skills-based education from a vocational or technical college provides students the needed skills without the debt associated with college education. The long-term benefits don't stop there. Beyond just being among the highest paying, trade jobs are also frequently some of the most satisfying. After all, they often involve a lot of physical, hands-on work while still being very mentally engaging. People often recall the joy you felt as a kid when you got to help build, create, or fix something tangible. These experiences provide a real sense of pride, achievement, and confidence.

The opening quote embodies my two core beliefs about teaching, and my commitment to providing students lifelong transferable skills.

Belief one: Technology Education is the ideal platform to teach relevant, 21st century, problem solving skills to students. These transferable trades based skills are a solid foundation to all their futures in a global society.

Belief two: Students learn when they meet with success and are encouraged to work on their own projects within the confines of the curriculum.

A student-centered and inquiry-based program of study offers both academic and social rewards thru direct student interest / buy-in. I was at a recent professional development program, when the speaker Frank Picone, compared a good education to video games. The first level is easy and filled with rewards encouraging players to continue. Subsequent levels get increasingly more difficult with ongoing rewards and successes generating student engagement.

So by pursuing a path of education with students that encompasses both beliefs, students are given an opportunity to see lifelong learning within the trades as an option to a college bound approach while learning transferable skills for a lifetime. Therefore, students will enter adult life with the ability to gain more financial prosperity, as well as true enjoyment while earning it .