State Representative Jim Buchy...
Do Not Overlook
Importance of Vocational Education
As Governor Kasich pointed out in his State of the State address
February 7th, Ohio has one of the best collections of colleges and
universities in the country. More and more students nationwide, upon
graduating from high school, move onto college in search of the
education and skills that will make them more competitive in the job
Each day thousands of skilled jobs go unfilled in this state.
Business cannot find people that can weld and machine products in their
workshops. Unfortunately, there is a popular mindset in this country
that a college degree will automatically equate into a viable
employment opportunity. This, frankly, is not the case. The promotion
of trade and vocational education will result in more young people
Ohio’s economy is growing. Jobs are coming back to the state—and many
of these jobs are well paying manufacturing jobs. As we continue to
make Ohio a business friendly environment you will see more industry
want to call our state home. We must have an able workforce that
is prepared to meet these job demands. Similarly, our schools must be
prepared to educate and train students for these jobs.
Vocational and technical schools, as well as community colleges, are
wonderful options for some students because they provide opportunities
for people to pursue their focused interests. This allows individuals
to earn a degree in a shorter period of time, allowing them to enter
the job market with a valuable education relevant to the field they are
We are blessed in west central Ohio to have fantastic career technical
schools, but we need to encourage vo-ag programs and other technical
classes to be offered in our schools that will enable students to
acquire skills, but remain in their home school for their core
Cleveland Public Schools has over 10 high school buildings, but just
one vocational school. The young people need the opportunity to
use their hands as they prepare for the work force. The current
situation is not serving our young people.
The types of jobs we need to prepare young people for are
changing. That is why enterprise needs to partner with the
schools, to ensure that the training programs are proactive in
improving technology. I applaud Governor Kasich’s forward thinking on
this subject and his commitment to advocating for vocational education.
He made it a point in the State of the State Address to mention the
importance of getting kids and adults alike trained quickly so they can
get the jobs that are available.