Get unlimited digital access to baltimoresun.com. $0.99 for 4 weeks.
News Opinion Readers Respond

The key to Baltimore population growth: vocational training

I'd love to see Baltimore grow, and if immigrants are the answer that's fine with me, as long as they're here legally ("Immigrants key to reaching mayor's population goal," Jan. 9).

Yet no matter how hard the mayor tries to increase population, it will be meaningless unless there are good jobs. It's fine Elsa Garcia's husband found some construction work, but it doesn't sound like full-time employment to me.

Why is no one suggesting a greater emphasis on vocational training in our schools? You can import new residents, but they need to have skills if they want jobs. And without jobs, how will they benefit the city?

Baltimore is a great location for many industries — access to railroads, a world-class port, excellent infrastructure and decent weather. However, without a skilled (or semi-skilled) workforce, who'd want to set up shop here?

It's time to reexamine the value of vocational schools as a way to grow a valuable citizenry. Just setting out the welcome mat is not enough. Placing a greater emphasis on occupational training in high school would be a great way to start. People need jobs and jobs require skills. Couldn't the city and the various labor unions get together on a project like this?

I spent a good part of last summer petitioning to save the Baltimore International (Culinary) College, now part of Stratford University. One of the important talking points was that upon graduation, students had an excellent chance of finding a good job. We need more schools like this — places that offer training for realistic careers.

Academic learning is fine, but in today's economy everyone needs a marketable skill. Also, once word is out that Baltimore is promoting vocational education and striving to create a viable work force, I'll bet industries from all over will take notice.

R. Heid, Baltimore

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Psychiatrists aren't the only ones who provide mental health services
    Psychiatrists aren't the only ones who provide mental health services

    In response to your article concerning the dearth of psychiatrists in the area ("Health reform spotlights shortage in Md. of psychiatrists," Jan. 27), this is true, but you forgot to mention that there are other providers who treat mental health issues. For example, psychologists and social...

  • Gov. Hogan must not be much of a businessman
    Gov. Hogan must not be much of a businessman

    As a person who has spent his entire career spanning more than 40 years as a CPA, I just get angry when people describe Gov. Larry Hogan as a "businessman." And now, I just finished reading a statement in Saturday's Baltimore Sun concerning the proposed budget as follows: "The city's schools...

  • Hogan should support Red, Purple lines
    Hogan should support Red, Purple lines

    Kudos to Gov. Larry Hogan for preserving money in his budget for the Red and Purple lines ("Hogan budget would cut state worker pay, city school aid," Jan. 22) while he considers their future. As the governor moves toward a final decision, he will have the opportunity to review work done by...

  • Baltimore the 'Star-Spangled City'
    Baltimore the 'Star-Spangled City'

    A city motto is to woo tourists, conventions and businesses, not just shipping ("Baltimore: Gateway to America," Jan. 25). Most Americans don't know or care that Baltimore was an important port for immigration and commerce because Baltimore is 300 miles farther inland than any other East...

  • Don't give a free pass to polluters, Mr. Hogan
    Don't give a free pass to polluters, Mr. Hogan

    I am a 79-year-old retired assistant superintendent of Baltimore County Public Schools and a former resident of Dundalk. I lived and worked in the Dundalk area for over 50 years. Though I am retired, I was active in Dundalk leading community projects and civic organizations for many of those...

  • Netanyahu visit: Maybe Congress should delegate all its policy work to foreign leaders
    Netanyahu visit: Maybe Congress should delegate all its policy work to foreign leaders

    Has Speaker John Boehner has a brilliant idea in inviting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to speak to Congress on the subject of Iran ("Netanyahu invitation unwise," Jan. 27). What else can he do when, apparently, no Republicans in the House have what it takes to address the issue?...

Comments
Loading