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VOLUME 26 / JUNE 2022

VOL - 26 / 2022 - JUNE

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Is There Too Much Pressure to Attend University in the United States? A Case Study in Western Ohio


Researchers sampled 431 graduating seniors from nine high schools within three counties in western Ohio evaluating workforce competencies of high school graduates, post-high school career and educational goals, and perceptions of various career and work paths (college, trade school, military, or entering the workforce directly. Based on the Ohio Means Jobs Readiness Seal, respondents reported relative higher skills in self-management categories such as work ethic, professionalism, and reliability. The lowest ratings were found in more technical areas of quantitative skills, use of digital technology, and written/oral communication. High school seniors report college as the preferred path to reach their future goals with significantly stronger encouragement from parents, community for college as compared to attending trade school, the military, or entering the workforce directly. With the growing skilled trades gap (Johnson, 2018) should the college degree continue to be pressured (Horn & Moesta, 2020)? The research found here can assist in the development of career programs that may enhance or broaden acceptable career options for our students and assist our countries economic needs. Moreover, as parents are continued to be identified as key influencers or potential drivers for student choices, the applications of this research needs to include more direct information to parents regarding the growing opportunity that lies within the skilled trades. As the baby-boomers continue to retire, and the work force continues to require more diversity of skills the implications of this snap shot into the current trends of students choosing college over what the State of Ohio continues to list as job demands, it is evident we have yet to solve the problem and meet the needs of the current work force.


Workforce, training, education, employment


Greg Homan, Jason Hedrick, Jason Horstman

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