53.6% of people with bachelor’s degrees under the age of 25 are unemployed. Can community colleges be the answer? We analyze how innovative community colleges are beginning to lead the way on training students for in-demand, future careers.
Community colleges have experienced a mixed reputation over their 100-year history. On the one hand, these institutions have been traditionally viewed as the lesser choice in higher education
. Other opinions have elevated these schools to the most direct way to train for the job market. Which view is more accurate? Today, the latter appears to be a more prevalent one, particularly in light of the fact that many four-year schools are now trying to capitalize on the same features community colleges have boasted since the very beginning.
Career Training Begins at Community College
Since their inception, community colleges have been focused on vocational training
. According to a report at the Times Herald-Record
, these schools were originally created in the early part of the 20th
century for the sole purpose of getting people into the workforce as quickly as possible. Fraternizing with academics and dabbling in philosophical thought processes were seen as counterproductive in this model of higher education.
While community colleges might have met their goals from a vocational standpoint, their singular focus also may have gained them a reputation as less academic schools than four-year colleges and universities. Those who wanted the true higher education experience would venture into the hallowed halls of those institutions perceived as factories for intellectuals and philosophers. However, when jobs become scarce and industries begin to fizzle, the practical application of higher education becomes much more revered.
Community Colleges Coin a Phrase Now Used by Four-Year Schools
Now we are at the beginning of the