SJVC partners with Generation T to support the skilled trades

by Ryan Smith on April 25, 2019 · 7:00 am

Generation_T_logoHigh school shop classes are slowly disappearing from schools across the nation. The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 introduced stricter math and science standards nationwide, which meant school districts often had to stop funding these classes. In addition, there is a growing labor shortage in the skilled trades and that is why San Joaquin Valley College (SJVC) is proud to announce that it has taken a pledge to collaborate with Generation T, a movement to help rebuild the skilled trades through a program with Lowe’s Home Improvement.

The goal of Generation T is to connect Americans to apprenticeships nationwide through a first-of-its-kind marketplace for training. It aims to re-shape the perception of the skilled trades and bring shop class back to high schools nationwide. This is done by working with builders, installers and community colleges that can serve as on-site trainers. However, they need support from the trades industries, including non-profit and government leaders, to help promote the movement along with the increasingly sought-after skilled trades.

Through these partnerships, Generation T will be providing innovative ways to tell the stories of successful trade leaders on social media while donating materials and tools to classrooms in target markets around the country. Lowe’s and its partners, such as Marshalltown and Bosch, have already donated thousands in tools and materials to high schools and non-profit training centers. Additionally, they will collaborate with school districts for paid on-the-job internships with installation companies.

This is why SJVC is a key part of the movement. SJVC offers six programs that train students for a technical or industrial career, including:

  • Aviation Maintenance Technology
  • Construction Management
  • Electrical Technology
  • Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration (HVAC-R)
  • Industrial Maintenance Technology
  • Information Technology

These programs provide students with hands-on training and are accelerated, so students can graduate, earn a certificate and be ready to work in their fields faster than they may think.

While well-trained technical and industrial professionals can have many career options, they will need proper training and experience to qualify and begin working in these competitive fields. Many people that enjoy working with their hands can pursue a stable career repairing aircraft, industrial or electrical equipment, computers, air conditioners or refrigerators, and more.

Despite employment growth and steady pay, the demand is far outpacing the supply of workers. While there may be concerns that these jobs are being automated — they’re not; they’re actually being enhanced by technology. The world needs skilled workers now more than ever, and vocational classes are vital to the future success of students and society in general. The world depends on people with shop skills, such as electricians, plumbers, carpenters, construction workers, mechanics and architects.

The Generation T movement with Lowe’s aims to place more than 50,000 new skilled workers in the trades by 2026 and bring shop class back to 100 classrooms a year. It may be a tall order, but SJVC is proud to be a part of the effort and provide the education needed to help fulfill these goals.

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