The essence of vocational education

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Vocational education refers to a system or course of study which prepares individuals for jobs that are based on manual or practical activities. Vocational education is traditionally non-academic in nature and is related to a specific trade, occupation or vocation. Because it is vocation-based, it is called vocational education. Until the end of the twentieth century, the aim of vocational education was to focus on specific trades such as automobile mechanic or welder, and was therefore associated with the activities of lower social classes.

Because of this, it attracted a level of stigma. Vocational education in fact is closely related to the age-old apprenticeship system of learning.

But with the development of economies worldwide, the labor market has become more specialized. Demand for higher levels of skill both in government and business sectors started increasing. This led to the further development of vocational education through publicly-funded training organizations and subsidized apprenticeship or traineeship initiatives for businesses. At the post-secondary level, vocational education is typically provided by an institute of technology, or by a local community college.

Vocational education has also diversified during the 20th century. Demand for vocational professionals is required more than ever in various industries such as retail, tourism, information technology, funeral services and cosmetics, as well as in the traditional crafts and cottage industries.

Vocational education prepares an individual for a job and not college. While most colleges will accept vocational education students, they tend to be limited because most colleges lack proper courses. Vocational education is a multifaceted one as it tends to focus around several careers which include auto repair, woodworking, carpentry, blacksmith, cosmetology, and other fields. There are many vocational schools across the country which provide the students to gain valuable hands on experience.

Vocational education helps people performance better in their jobs as they acquire a great learning experience while working professionals get a chance to hone their skills while making money.

Vocational education and training is a sort of introduction as it gets employees ready for the workplace which comes handy while performing various tasks.

Due to the nature of the skills it imparts, a student does not consider it a futility as compared to academic education.

In vocational education, as the term itself denotes, the students are specialised and therefore they have more chances of employment as compared to others. For students who are in a dilemma whether they should attend college or not, vocational education really opens a completely new door. It makes an individual a responsible and independent whereas those who study regular courses lack in this sphere.

A career of one’s own choice is one of the major benefits of this education. A vast majority of people are caught in the wrong jobs because they were in it for the sake of job, money, lack of alternative while an individual pursuing vocational education is already pursuing a dream job. This type of education is a great asset to the economy. Our government need not import foreign technicians on higher wages as our own can do the required work.

Certain vocational skills acquired from vocational education teach students the importance of manual work, e.g., the physical labor done under certain jobs make them strong, healthy, active. Majority of vocational skills are applicable all over the world and these create employment opportunities in foreign countries. Technical programs develop the economy by bridging the demand and supply gap with highly skilled workers. It also gives students the opportunity to take marketable skills from the classroom directly into the working world. Better vocational education also attracts foreign investments and foreign exchanges in the form of foreign conglomerates and foreign students. School drop-outs and adults can also receive this type of education as it provides opportunity to learn a new skill or trade. There are many well paid career fields in which a college degree is not required. Another benefit is that hands-on work activities allow direct application of acquired knowledge This kind of education provides stable jobs as these are the jobs whose demand is never filled up.

By Librent Benganio

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