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Forget college. Learn a trade.


Sidenti's Avatar


Sidenti
05.09.2014 , 07:29 AM | #1
So I'm driving on the interstate today when I hear a loud snapping sound in the driver's side door, followed by the window rolling down of its own accord. Turns out the control module for the arm that raises and lowers the windows broke. Yaaaaay.

I went to college for journalism and computer science. Every time something mechanical breaks around the house, I regret my choice. Add that to the fact that the job market is hell for professionals while tradespeople get hired left and right? I'm left with only one conclusion:

Forget college. Learn a trade.

You have any idea what welders make? A helluva lot more than I ever did in finance, and hardly anyone does the work anymore. Play with fire and get paid? WHY DID I NOT APPRECIATE THAT WHEN I WAS YOUNGER?!

That guy who's getting $200 to fix my ride? I hope he's laughing at me for it. I really do. I deserve it, because I've seen the Youtube video on how to replace that thing and not only does it look like a lot less work than, say, doing research for an article or fixing what someone else screwed up on a computer - it looks like FUN! And you should see the tools these guys get to use! Hell, I'd kill just to have the pneumatic lift.

The moral?

Don't believe what the movies tell you. Being a white-collar professional is for losers and terrorists. Learn a trade. Acquire the knowledge and the tools to fix all of the things.

The world will pay you bank and be totally jealous of your actual skills.

/rant

MishraArtificer's Avatar


MishraArtificer
05.14.2014 , 04:37 PM | #2
Quote: Originally Posted by Sidenti View Post
So I'm driving on the interstate today when I hear a loud snapping sound in the driver's side door, followed by the window rolling down of its own accord. Turns out the control module for the arm that raises and lowers the windows broke. Yaaaaay.

I went to college for journalism and computer science. Every time something mechanical breaks around the house, I regret my choice. Add that to the fact that the job market is hell for professionals while tradespeople get hired left and right? I'm left with only one conclusion:

Forget college. Learn a trade.

You have any idea what welders make? A helluva lot more than I ever did in finance, and hardly anyone does the work anymore. Play with fire and get paid? WHY DID I NOT APPRECIATE THAT WHEN I WAS YOUNGER?!

That guy who's getting $200 to fix my ride? I hope he's laughing at me for it. I really do. I deserve it, because I've seen the Youtube video on how to replace that thing and not only does it look like a lot less work than, say, doing research for an article or fixing what someone else screwed up on a computer - it looks like FUN! And you should see the tools these guys get to use! Hell, I'd kill just to have the pneumatic lift.

The moral?

Don't believe what the movies tell you. Being a white-collar professional is for losers and terrorists. Learn a trade. Acquire the knowledge and the tools to fix all of the things.

The world will pay you bank and be totally jealous of your actual skills.

/rant
Quoted for truthiness.

I, too, went into IT, hoping the computer-driven future would welcome my skills with open arms.

Nope.

So now I'm looking around for a free welding class, as my mechanical and electronics aptitudes both outweigh my social skills by almost 9000 each.
Quote: Originally Posted by CosmicKat View Post
Twiki (with or without Dr. Theopolis), Muffet, and Wesley Crusher could form a boy band and do a Buck Rogers/BSG/Trek crossover tour, then crash on a remote asteroid, meet up with Doctoor Zee, and save themselves by making a spaceship out of random Cylon debris... and it would still be less stupid than Jar Jar.
Behold...my referral link!

AshGotem's Avatar


AshGotem
05.18.2014 , 10:09 AM | #3
Pass but then again... What would a Jawa do?

DrewFromPhilly's Avatar


DrewFromPhilly
05.18.2014 , 07:08 PM | #4
Is some truth to this, but I'd be careful about telling the young and impressionable that college isn't the best choice. Many, many career paths require that and there are several fields where mechanically inclined or people who are good with their hands can make more than a tradesman and you need a college degree to get there. One of those things in life that you gotta spend the time looking into before just rushing in at full sprint, but I will say that I used to know a educational administrator (in the UK, but still relevant) who was 100% convinced that college isn't for everyone - and not because they are dumb or incapable in anyway, but because they would be a lot happier following a different path that suited them better than the "normal" way of doing things.

Sill, the first job I got out of college paid the same as apprentice electricians earn in my area. If you're heart is set on something like that, check local unions around your area and ask them if they have an apprenticeship program - many do, and in different crafts (painting, electrical, ceramic, plumbing, cement laying, general labor, etc.). I know of a few around Philadelphia, for example, that accept new people right out of high school every summer.

Uber_the_Goober's Avatar


Uber_the_Goober
05.19.2014 , 07:21 AM | #5
Quote: Originally Posted by Sidenti View Post
You have any idea what welders make? A helluva lot more than I ever did in finance, and hardly anyone does the work anymore. Play with fire and get paid? WHY DID I NOT APPRECIATE THAT WHEN I WAS YOUNGER?!
In my area, a straight up welder (who does nothing else) will earn about $50,000 to $75,000 a year, depending on available OverTime. He'll work between 50 and 70 hours a week.

He'll work in filthy, dirty, hot conditions. He'll work in the rain. He'll work in the snow. On weekends. On Memorial Day. Then he'll be out of work for a few weeks, when he needs the money the most. If he's lucky enough to have a job in an indoor shop, his wages will stagnate once he perfects his trade (4 or 5 years into it) and he'll stop getting raises. He'll be that 50 year old guy who earns the same as the new 25 year old kid. And if he's ever fired, or quits, nobody will hire him, due to the way he's restricted his skillset.

He'll lose his vision early in life (welding flash ain't no joke) and possibly get lung cancer from the welding smoke. He'll probably devolve in language skills, due to the people he's surrounded by. When he hits 50 or so, his body will start to break down, and by 60, he won't be able to play with his grandkids due to bad knees, bad back, etc.

Learn trades for personal benefit. Go to college for a quality family life.
POT5 COMMANDO - CAPTAIN OBV'IOUS
SENTINEL - PICKLE'JAR

AMONG OTHERS...
See you in the warzones, muppets.

ImmortalLowlife's Avatar


ImmortalLowlife
05.19.2014 , 08:27 AM | #6
Or even better, learn to hustle. And when I say hustle I'm talking "legal hustle". I have a self taught ear for music production that i combined with an associate's degree in audio/ video production & graphic design. I do Mixing, mastering, recording, video filming & editing, etc. I'm also a "shade tree mechanic" that can do everything from tune ups and oil changes, to stereo installation and window tinting. (Also self taught). I run a computer repair/cleaning service that I started after I got my 1st degree in digital electronics. I've got a CDL licence and run a shuttle service. I do voice over/commercials for 3 radio stations. And I'm my OWN boss. My point is "don't depend on that degree or that trade, it's plenty of money out there, you just gotta go get it". I'm up Mon-Fri at 5am and usually don't get home till after 5, but I've got EVERY weekend off because that's how I roll. My wife is a stay at home mom. She's now going to school for real estate to be an agent, and if things go as planned...this time next year we'll be starting our next business venture...selling houses.


It's out there if you want it....but no-one is gonna give it too you.....you gotta get up, get out, and go get it.
"There is no Light Side...There is no Dark Side...there is only The Force..."

And you already know...Click HERE for free stuff!!!

Sidenti's Avatar


Sidenti
05.19.2014 , 08:59 AM | #7
I totally forgot I wrote this. XD Love the responses though! Many valid points all around. -bp

cymonguk's Avatar


cymonguk
05.20.2014 , 09:50 AM | #8
As an old man, at 40, I will tell you a couple of things that life has taught me:

1) Do what you love. It doesn't matter how much you earn, honestly, getting up in the morning and thinking "I hate my life, I hate my job" is no fun. If this is you now, get out as soon as possible before it destroys you. You are better to earn $100 a day doing something you love than $500 doing a job you hate. Trust me I have done both.

2) If you can't do what you like right away, find a way to make the job you do currently work out better. I changed from being employed by the worlds biggest corporate to being a consultant contractor. I now go to places and work for 3 months, get paid what I would have done in 6 months, then don't work for 2-3 months.

2.1) Whilst you are not working learn some real skills something you really want to do. I have begun learning skills such as woodworking, furniture restoring, French polishing and cabinet making. I know I will be able to use those skills.

3) Learning a trade isn't for everyone, indeed you would be better telling people to not go to school or learn a trade but to go play a sport all day long (baseball, basketball, football, golf, snooker, etc), as with ten years practice you are going to be pretty good and the pay off can be way more than any normal job. I repeat read number one.

4) Don't think anyone you work for will show you any loyalty, all those hours you put in ? Meaningless, when the redundancies hit, no-one will even look. Be loyal to you, friends and family, they are the only ones who will be there for you through it all. Be selfish in protecting that group, if moving, changing, or dumping on your company/boss/colleagues will help you, do it, no one else will even give you a second thought. Sad but true!! Some of my best "colleagues", of 10 years, were only too willing to crap on those around them when it came down to it.

5) Go work in a hospital or finals days care unit for a short period, even a weekend and ask some of the old people there what their advice is, what they would do different. You know what I heard?

i) I wish I had spent last time at work, and more time with my family. Not one person ever said I wish I spent more time with my boss.
ii) I wish I hadn't fell out with my friend, or i had got back in touch with them. Once you are on your deathbed it is too late to have regrets.
iii) Don't live with regrets because you are too afraid. Jump for everything, find ways to make those things you want happen. I wanted to live on a farm, with animals, I could never afford that even on my wages ( a farm here will cost you upwards of 5 million), but I kept my eyes open, read things, got papers and magazines from where I wanted to live, and I found an old farm being rented in my ideal area. Surrounded by 500 acres and with space for al the animals I could want, yes I made sacrifices, yes it wasn't ideal in many other ways, but I couldn't be happier with it,

You are going to be doing something every day for 60 years to put food on the table, try and make it something you will enjoy.

Uber_the_Goober's Avatar


Uber_the_Goober
05.20.2014 , 10:54 AM | #9
Quote: Originally Posted by cymonguk View Post
As an old man, at 40, I will tell you a couple of things that life has taught me:

[truthiness snipped for brevity]

You are going to be doing something every day for 60 years to put food on the table, try and make it something you will enjoy.
Thank you...
POT5 COMMANDO - CAPTAIN OBV'IOUS
SENTINEL - PICKLE'JAR

AMONG OTHERS...
See you in the warzones, muppets.

cymonguk's Avatar


cymonguk
05.20.2014 , 02:08 PM | #10
If you think you cant make money do what you love take a look online at the Chelsea Flower Show. There are people there who spend their lives working with one type of flower, and they make enough money to keep themselves in food! They are passionate about what they do, they love it and they look happy doing it.

I would also suggest adjusting your lifestyle to meet what you want to do, I used to have a lovely Audi A3, BMW 3 series, Honda Civic VTR from work, I used to eat branded food. Now I have an old battered Fourtrak and an estate car to carry all my farm and animal stuff. I eat the cheaper brands and home supermarket makes of basics and nice meat, I grow all my own veg, chickens for eggs, I have adjusted my lifestyle to meet how I want to work.