IN PRAISE OF THE APPRENTICE

30 Oct

PLEASE!

Please show me a college grad who knows how a cam is made.

Better yet, show me a college grad who knows what a cam is.

Does a college grad know how to combine a dividing head and a milling table gearing system? Does a college grad know what a dividing head is? Does he/she know that this knowledge is required to cut a cam?

How about compound angles? Many college grads know their solid geometry but they have no idea how to generate a compound angle.

And how about tipping a milling head to cut a 1.5 inch radius with a cutting tool that has an actual 0.5 inch radius? Have any college grads even given this any thought? Better yet, have they even seen any reason to give this any thought?

Maybe not – – – but I can guarantee you that a $1.00 per hour Mexican machinist has given some thought to figure out this puzzle.

So where am I going with this?

We need to spend more time educating brilliant young people who are not confident or interested or in going to college. I have not mentioned those who are not financially able to go to college. Why have I not mentioned them? Because they are wise enough to realize that they are not likely to pay off those loans and still be ahead of the financial curve.

We need to establish toolmaker apprenticeships, electrical apprenticeships, computer programmer apprenticeships, wireless/routing/server apprenticeships, plumbing apprenticeships, carpenter apprenticeships, electrical contracting apprenticeships – – – must I go on and on?

We need people who know how to maintain our infrastructure.

We give grants to civil engineering colleges to build new infrastructure.

But how about grants to those who can maintain what we already have – – – those who keep the systems working while the college grads figure out what we need in the future?

We need to support industries that are willing to establish apprenticeships.

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