Skills Learning vs. Four-Year Degrees for Gen Z

High school and vocational school students have faced some serious challenges in 2020. Beyond canceled events and remote learning, high schools in Pennsylvania and across the country are seeing a major change in goals for after graduation. Why are graduating students considering skills learning and trade careers over a four-year college degree? Recent studies show Generation Z is thinking beyond a typical bachelor’s degree track to find professional success in the workforce.

ECMC Group and VICE Media conducted a national survey earlier this year to gather data about high school students’ perceptions of higher education and career goals.

Jeremy Wheaton, president and CEO of ECMC Group said to HVAC Insider, “This study shows that today’s students are incredibly resilient and resolute in their desire to forge their own path when it comes to education. It also illustrates that they have a keen understanding of the need for skills-based training and lifelong learning, which are integral to succeeding now and in the future.”

Standout statistics from the Gen Z study include:

  • Student Debt
    64% of participants worry about how they’ll pay for higher education.
  • Skills Matter
    74% believe a skills-based education (e.g., trade skills, STEM, etc.) makes sense in today’s world.
    61% said the top place to learn is on the job.
  • Confidence in the Future
    84% believe their job prospects are equal to or better than their parents’ generation.

Jobs in the Pennsylvania Propane Industry

The propane industry can offer Gen Z sustainable career paths based in skills training that are uniquely ‘recession-proof’ regardless of the economic environment. In fact, the propane industry aligns directly with responses from survey participants.

  • Worries about Student Debt
    Most jobs in the propane industry offer in-depth technical and on-the-job training while working with advanced technology. You will receive instruction in safety including the fundamentals of working with propane.
  • Valuable Skills Training
    When you join the propane workforce, you aren’t just getting a job. You have the opportunity to grow and develop a career through specialized instruction and on-the-job training, and work with advanced technology. Positions such as a service technician or delivery driver combine skills learning and on-the-job training. Plus, there are opportunities for income and job growth as your propane expertise develops.
  • Job Security
    Propane companies are looking for qualified applicants now. This industry continues to grow by developing new and improved propane technologies designed to help homeowners and businesses save money, reduce emissions, and contribute to America’s energy security. Propane is not only a safe fuel, it’s also an approved clean fuel listed in the 1990 Clean Air Act. Working in the propane industry, you won’t just be doing a job, you’ll be part of a team that’s building communities, keeping America running, and protecting the environment for the next generation.

Now is the time to start searching for career opportunities in the Pennsylvania propane industry.

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