May 26th, 2009

The Future of Work

In the New York Times magazine last weekend, ‘The Case for Working With Your Hands,’ by Matthew B. Crawford, argued some personal and professional reasons why a job ‘working with your hands’ is be preferable to one in the ’surreal’ world of office or academic life.
workwithhandsThe essay is worth a read and asks important questions for anyone in the education community. What are the jobs of the future? And are schools preparing students for them? Are ‘hands on’ jobs more dependable in an economic downturn? What does a college degree mean anymore? Crawford writes:

The Princeton economist Alan Blinder argues that the crucial distinction in the emerging labor market is not between those with more or less education, but between those whose services can be delivered over a wire and those who must do their work in person or on site. The latter will find their livelihoods more secure against outsourcing to distant countries. As Blinder puts it, “You can’t hammer a nail over the Internet.” Nor can the Indians fix your car. Because they are in India.

The Case for Working With Your Hands [NY Times 5/24/09]
Related Program: Discounted Dreams [VIDEO]
Related Program: Starting Over [VIDEO]

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