Feb 18, 2014

Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on College, or Beauty Salons Trade Program? Why College May Not be the Best Option These Days

College, or Beauty Salons Trade Program? Why College May Not be the Best Option These Days

Have you ever heard about Mike Rowe’s opinion of college? (He’s the guy from the TV show “Dirty Jobs”). He is of the opinion that because college educations are so expensive, and because many students graduate with a degree and then can’t find a job, that high schools should encourage trade schools more often. For any of us who have a degree that we weren’t able to use (but are still paying off), this is a smart observation – one that we intend to share with our own children when the time comes.

What kids of trades is he talking about though? Basically, he’s talking about any trade, from cosmetology to plumbing, that requires a course of training or apprenticeship, rather than a traditional degree. So let’s talk about the trade of cosmetology for a minute. According to Hays Academy, one of the Beauty Salons in Salina, a full course of training takes 12 months, and costs a fraction of what a traditional college degree costs. The average salary for cosmetologists in KS is from $19,000 to $34,000, depending on location. And instructors make closer to $46,000. That’s a respectable salary, achieved with a fraction of the time and money that a typical degree requires.

Of course, he’s not saying that people shouldn’t go to college. He’s saying, and many parents agree, that college isn’t always the “best” option for high school graduates. And although cosmetology is the trade we used as an example here, there are literally thousands of other trades that can be learned faster and cheaper than a college education and that are more of a “sure bet” than a degree that you may or may not end up being able to use.

Whether your child wants to attend a traditional university to get a teaching degree, or wants to attend a cosmetology program from the Beauty Salons in Salina, what Mike Rowe is encouraging is not pushing children into college just because that’s what we’ve always done. A college degree is no guarantee of a job after graduation, and in many cases, has left people starting off their post-college years with a significant amount of college debt, and no means to pay it off.


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