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Central Standard

The Changing Nature Of The College Degree


The current job market is very competitive.  A single opening will see hundreds of applicants, a lot of them with four years of college on their résumés.  But, how important is that degree when compared to technical skills, or on the job training? Is a bachelor’s degree worth what it once was?

On this Tuesday's Central Standard, we take a look at the changing nature of the college degree.  Is it as good an investment as it was ten or twenty years ago?  In lieu of a traditional path, many adults are choosing a technical school or vocational training, or on the job training.

Today we look at that question with Dr. Teresa Kriley, the director of the Ottawa University LifePlan Center, Alan Spell, an Economic and Workforce Research Manager at Missouri Department of Economic Development, and David Kendrick, Business Manager of the Kansas City Building Trades Council.  We explore what students should consider before entering university and what they can expect a degree to bring them.  We also talk about the choices people have when college isn’t for them.

Does this apply to you? If you eschewed formal schooling and jumped directly into the workforce, we’d like to hear your story.  Comment below or send us a note at centralstandard@kcur.org.  Let us know what field you’re in, the number of years you’ve been at the job, how you learned it, and what made you decide to work for it rather than attend school.


As senior producer of Up To Date, I want our listeners to hear familiar and new voices that shine light on the issues and challenges facing the myriad communities KCUR serves, and to expose our audiences to the wonderful and the creative in the Kansas City area. Just as important to me is an obligation to mentor the next generation of producers to ensure that the important conversations continue. Reach me at alexanderdk@kcur.org.