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The Divergent Roads to Post-Secondary Success


Education Next

High school graduates face a binary choice: college or job. Rising tuition, debt, and low-paying entry-level jobs make apprenticeships an attractive alternative. Ryan Craig, author of Apprentice Nation, supports expanding apprenticeships, while Ben Wildavsky, author of The Career Arts, argues for the value of a college education. Craig suggests apprenticeships offer paid work and skills training, addressing the skills and experience gaps in the workforce. He criticizes the college-for-all approach, citing underemployment and student loan debt. Wildavsky counters that college graduates earn significantly more than high school graduates and that the college-wage premium emerged organically based on employer hiring decisions. Both agree on the need for reform and innovation in postsecondary education and training.

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