Ticket to the middle class

March 17, 2008
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Forget outsourcing. A Michigan research group says the larger problem for manufacturing will be finding enough domestic workers to navigate the complexities of modern factory floors.

The Center for Automotive Research in Ann Arbor contends in a recent report that while efficiencies will reduce the number of workers employed in car making, those who fill shoes of retiring baby-boomers will need to be technologically literate.

Thatâ??s bad news for people who havenâ??t been through at least a community college, says the centerâ??s chairman, Dave Cole.

Itâ??s also worrisome for a society struggling to improve high school graduation rates. Manufacturing, which for decades has elevated many a graduate to the middle class, is slipping out of reach as an option.

The study focused on Michigan, but it sounds as if it could have come out of Indiana.

Whatâ??s your take?
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  • I think that way of life has been dying slowly over the last 20 years or so. The days of graduating high school and going to work at the local factory have passed by. People will need to embrace the fact that they'll have to put a little more effort into their education or struggle financially their whole lives. Personally I think it's a good thing if more people start seeking out a college education or at least community, or techincal colleges. A more educated community as a whole can be bad...
  • We may see in the next 10 or so years a consideration to more taxes for college/community college level of education. We will not be the leaders in education, but follow suit of so many europeans with our education system.

    I know quite a few intellegant young adults as well as older people who mentally can do the work and succeed, but has failed to come up with the finances to do so. The up and coming movie 21 is a prime example of how we do not reward intellegance but reward money. If you have more money, reguardless of intellegance, you can succeed in getting a college education (as long as there are some basis). Heck, you can be a C student and become president!

    My belief is that our society is backwards and will fall too far behind before we have to spend billions, possibly trillions - not on wars- but on a better education system.

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