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Originally published December 13, 2013 at 3:19 PM | Page modified December 13, 2013 at 4:01 PM

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Letters, not exceeding 200 words, must include your full name, address and telephone numbers for verification. Email: letters@seattletimes.com; mail: Letters Editor, The Seattle Times, P.O. Box 70, Seattle, WA 98111; fax: (206) 464-2261.

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Apprenticeship programs

Increasing the number of skilled workers

Editor, The Times:

High schools that partner with industry to provide apprenticeship programs offer another option to students who aren’t sure if they are bound for college [“A German import helps keep factories humming,” page one, Dec. 1].

Apprenticeship programs, like those that have existed in Germany since the Middle Ages, can provide students with high-level skills and set them up to acquire well-paying jobs in the community, especially in a time when finding a job is so challenging.

Instead of resting on the idea that all will be fine with a college degree, maybe it makes sense in today’s economy to have something to fall back on, like a trade. This doesn’t prevent you from going to college at a later time. Apprenticeship programs also increase the number of skilled workers needed to meet America’s economic needs.

We need to take a closer look at the German model and promote these programs across the United States. President Obama says he supports apprenticeships; his administration has set aside money for these programs. Now it’s time to move ahead. What are we waiting for?

Colin Thompson Vranesh, Mercer Island




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