In last night’s CNN GOP Town Hall meeting, John Kasich had some advice for young people preparing for the work force. Here is what he said:
And one final thing: workforce development. We have got to begin to teach our kids in K through 12 and also in the community college and the four-year schools to be getting an education for a job that exists. Don’t get educated in a vacuum. Make sure you know what you want to do, and look for an education that can lead you to a real job.
Kasich could not be more wrong here. Here was what I tweeted last night:
Kasich tells students to get training for jobs that exist. No. Prepare broadly & generally. Jobs you will do may not yet exist. #cnntownhall
— John Fea (@JohnFea1) March 30, 2016
For a candidate who talks so much about community, moral philosophy, social healing, and what it means to be human, Kasich has bought into the rhetoric of vocational training often associated with advocates of STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) and politicians such as Marco Rubio, Rick Scott, Barack Obama, and Jeb Bush.
Kasich misses what most career professionals have been saying and writing about for more than a decade. Namely, many of today’s students will one day work at jobs that do not yet exist. Students–especially college students–are better off training broadly and generally in the liberal arts and the humanities. This will allow them to obtain the skills needed to adjust and adapt toa constantly changing marketplace.
My tweet solicited a few responses along these lines:
— Lucy Green (@lucysantosgreen) March 30, 2016
— Kris Shaffer (@krisshaffer) March 30, 2016
@JohnFea1 Don’t even “prepare.” Just know things, know how to know new things, put them together, try to understand.
— John Haas (@haas1235) March 30, 2016
@JohnFea1 Clearly, though, Kasich’s choice of “Professional Politician” as a major was a wise move. Clear R.O.I. there…
— Zhang Zeduan (@JaZarris) March 30, 2016
— Andrew Hermeling (@ddyrlihermeling) March 30, 2016
Especially since Kasich specifically said K-12. Really? Kindergarten, elementary, training for “jobs that exist”? https://t.co/QM8pMoEn85
— M.E. Steele-Pierce (@steelepierce) March 30, 2016