Stanley Sandler: Training trumps education

March 23, 2014 

Regarding the March 18 news article “ Group spreads college gospel”: Does Alex Lucas’ go-to-college “gospel” include the facts that the average college debt is now $30,000-plus? That combined college student debt now exceeds that of the general population? That these are lifetime debts that cannot be escaped by bankruptcy? And that even their offspring will inherit them?

I have a friend who owes $120,000 in student debt (art major), can see no way of repaying and is now contemplating fleeing to Canada to start life anew.

America does not need more college grads; it needs good apprenticeship programs, starting in our high schools. In Fayetteville, there is a real shortage of heating/air-conditioning workers, and our community colleges cannot turn them out fast enough. Local firms pay unskilled workers to bring them up to speed and promise them good wages and job security. Why couldn’t kids learn that in high school or in industry free?

Except for grads in such fields as law and medicine, the value of a B.A. is exaggerated. College grads make more money not necessarily because they went to college but because such people tend to be more motivated and intelligent. What does a bachelor’s mean if almost everyone has one?

Fortunately, Americans are becoming aware that the “college bubble” has burst.

Stanley Sandler, Spring Lake

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