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Whitmer says state lags in encouraging skilled trades

Flickr User The Crucible

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says Michigan has encouraged students to seek four-year college degrees at the expense of encouraging careers in skilled trades.
                     The Whitmer administration says that’s cost the state’s economy, employers, and workers.


                Governor Whitmer toured a Detroit community college to make her point. She says less than half of high school graduates in Michigan seek advanced schooling. And she says that means many lost opportunities, even during good economic times.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do. This is a cultural thing that we’ve got to overcome.”

                Whitmer says that’s true of older adults who might also be interested in careers in technical fields such as mechanics, electricians, and medical and dental assistants. These are careers that usually require professional certification but not four-year degrees. She also says more certified technology-proficient workers would also attract more high-end employers to the state.

Rick Pluta is the Capitol Bureau Chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He is heard daily on WCMU's Morning Edition and All Things Considered.