No. of Recommendations: 1

The point is, that if you have a useful skill, there are jobs.

Absolutely correct. Of course, it also helps if you have experience using those precise skills in the same position elsewhere and you are over 25 but under 40 or 50 years old.

Acquiring new useful skills is most difficult for today's buggy-whip makers like customer service people, middle managers and junior executives in their 40's and 50's whose jobs have been eliminated or outsourced. When they try to switch to a healthcare or technical career, they have to go back and re-do their entire education.

If displaced middle-aged people had years of general data analysis, financial service or even out-of-date computer programming skills, with years of management experience such folks formerly earned 100K plus.

If they want to change careers and become an Oracle or SAP engineer, or some other comparably-paying useful skill presently in demand, there are few opportunities for them to get such proprietary system training in the existing public colleges - or even in privately-run programs at a reasonable price.

Those who go back to technical college to try nursing, medical technology or some of the 2 year respiratory therapy programs have stiff competition for the limited number of slots in public schools.

Of course, my thoughts are based primarily on personal experience as an adjunct professor in a southeastern public technical community college with a huge influx of 40-60 year olds trying to get re-trained into different career paths as well as 18-30 year olds without previous college degrees.

The most in-demand graduates who quickly get jobs are those in one of the highly-competitive programs in nursing, medical technology or lab technician areas. The ones studying auto mechanics and other hands-on trades also get placed pretty quickly. Those in business programs don't seem to do quite as well. It's the "soft skills" that are not in such great demand.

Unfortunately, the largest percentage of the unemployed and those seeking re-training tend to be those with financial or "soft skills."

Wendy might have a different perspective since she also has been teaching part-time in a similar college at the opposite end of the country in the northwest.
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