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Austin, Texas—Local guidance counselor Miranda Bolton was lauded by top school executives for her work in pushing students toward colleges and universities. Bolton, an eight-year veteran of West Austin High School, works with high school students to help pave their career path. “Miranda Bolton excels in ‘toeing the company line,’ and we need to recognize her work,” says Ben Harper, Superintendent of Schools, Austin.
Yet, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the job outlook for plumbers, pipefitters and steamfitters looks very strong. What do you know? The trades is a viable career path. In fact, the median annual wage for this group was $51,450 in May 2016, and that wage number is expected to grow with the need to fill more jobs in the next 5-10 years.
Also, bls.gov states that employment of plumbers, pipefitters, and steamfitters is projected to grow 16% from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations. New construction and building maintenance and repair should drive demand for these workers, and overall job opportunities are expected to be good, and you cannot outsource these jobs.
Nevertheless, each student that enters guidance counselor Bolton’s office is reminded to work smarter, not harder, according to the large poster hanging behind her desk. Soon-to-be graduates can’t shake the dream of working in a stale, homogenized workplace.
When asked about the entering a trade, brainwashed student, Timmie Anderson, said, “College now seems like the better choice for me. The idea of paying off student debt for years, graduating with a degree with no guarantee of a job when I get done, and not getting paid for on-the-job training all seems very attractive to me,” says Anderson. “Plus I don’t have to work with my hands, solve real-time problems and exert any physical energy. I have Ms. Bolton to thank for that.”
* The names and events in this post are purely satirical to further messages in the industry.
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