The shortage of skilled trades people is something that has been talked about for as long as I have been in my trade and I am sure, longer than that. It has been my experience that good help is truly hard to find. and even in the beginning of my own training, it was hard to find the skilled people with trades qualifications to learn from.
In this modern age of technology and excessive screen time I find myself wondering, how much of today’s youth have any interest in working in the trades? Are kids signing up for shop class? I believe it may be time to look at new ways to appeal to high school students and high school graduates still uncertain of their career path. As 18-year-old Adrian Schut suggests in this article, co-op work terms offering hands on experience and perhaps a change in attitude in the way university is pushed on the brightest students.
As Welding business owner Brad Hollman suggests,”lead your skilled people better, and you’ll need fewer of them”. Another interesting point in filling these positions is to do so with efficiency and proper teaching.“It’s hard to find good welders. It’s easy to find a body. It’s harder to find a person who’s worth what they expect to get paid,” Hollman says.
I can say from experience that it is difficult to find trained qualified carpenters and apprentices. When my time comes as an instructor I hope to influence students to take pride in being skilled tradespeople and to have the desire to share their knowledge and inspire others.