i go through phases where i think a lot about what these boys will be like as adults. during those times i wonder what their jobs will be. i really do not care what profession they choose as long as they are dedicated and hard workers. and i hope they will enjoy what they do, but i realize that there might be times in their lives when they need jobs and perhaps will do things they aren’t passionate about. i just hope they do those jobs well.
i went through one of these thought phases while reading matthew crawford’s book shop class as soulcraft: an inquiry into the value of work. here’s a passage that really got me thinking about the boys’ education:
Today, in our schools, the manual trades are given little honor. The egalitarian worry that has always attended tracking students into “college prep” and “vocational ed” is overlaid with another: the fear that acquiring a specific skill set means that one’s life is determined. In college, by contrast, many students don’t learn anything of particular application; college is the ticket to an open future.
crawford does not romanticize vocational arts/trades but he does a good job at pointing out the almost absurd truth that many (perhaps most?) students nowadays graduate from four year colleges with little to no direction and little to no marketable skills. i remember that feeling growing inside of me as my college education came to a close that i felt as though i had kind of missed something. i enjoyed most of my education and am thankful for it, but i often felt like i hadn’t been trained to do much besides learn how to learn (which i realize isn’t a bad thing…except when you find yourself in the market for a job). for many degrees, it felt as though you had to then go on to a master’s level before you would find training and qualification for jobs.
so, for the boys (and the coming girl) i hope omar and i can encourage them to pursue education/training in the areas that best suit them as individuals with specific gifts, be it an apprenticeship or college or trade school or a combination or something i haven’t thought of. i don’t want them to think college is simply “what you do.”
but i’d be totally lying if i didn’t admit that i’d love it if one of them went to culinary school.