Archive for October, 2009

Not so middle ground in technical and trades careers

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009

There’s a common belief that in order to find a job in this economy, or in the future, one must have a college degree. So, it’s no surprise that an emphasis has been placed on higher education in the recent years.

But, it turns out, that’s not the full story.  A new study shows demand for workers to fill jobs in the middle of the labor market will continue to grow.

The Workforce Alliance and Bureau of Labor Statistics have conducted the study about “middle skill” jobs and how they are still an important part of the workforce and are even seeing growth in some areas. “Middle skill” jobs require technical training beyond high school but not necessarily earning a Bachelor’s degree or higher. These middle skill jobs have seen a slight decrease in recent years, but still make up roughly half of the workforce, according the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Workforce Alliance concluded that the healthcare, various construction-related, and maintenance/repair professionals will see the most increase through 2014. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states:

  • Healthcare jobs with sub-baccalaureate education and training requirements will vary from 20 to 40%
  • Employment in 5 skilled construction crafts is expected to grow by 10 to 15% and provide 4.6 million job openings
  • Employment in installation/maintenance/repair and transportation will grow at similar rates and together generate more than 4 million additional openings

These jobs can range in occupation – from respiratory therapist to dental hygienist to construction. The Workforce Alliance is also reaching out to state policy makers to craft legislation to guarantee two years of training beyond high school to help meet the demand.

The Perfect Storm of Technology, Art and Soul: Motorcycle Restoration

Thursday, October 8th, 2009

Motorcycle restoration is in many ways the perfect hobby. It combines interesting things like machinery, craftsmanship, skill, collecting, the excitement of riding and the acquisition of value. You can simply learn more about how cycles work, or you can throw yourself headlong into every square inch of motorized technology and customization.

What to get? Motorcycles that are even fairly-well made can be desirable – anything from the old English mid-sized sporting singles like Nortons, Velocette’s, Triumphs and BSA’s to the revolutionary Japanese twins like the Kawasaki Z1 or the Honda CB750s. The prices of older, rarer classics have risen but are still within reach, unlike the models that get more attention from the elite collectors like Vincents, MotoGuzzi and Ducatis.

So where to start? Honestly, do your homework with local and regional clubs, meet experts, learn which questions to ask and why certain things are important. Some states have custom swap meets that feature many different models and parts manufacturers. For those ready to take the big plunge, there’s always Bike Week in Daytona, FL that will let you find literally thousands of riders and builders in one small town who are ready to show off what they’ve been doing.

What else helps? A few subscriptions to motorcycle restoration magazines, keeping your eyes on some legit restoration blogs and of course, some new local friends who are already knee-deep in cycles can’t hurt either. Then you’re ready to move onto the big 3. The big 3 ingredients in any bike restoration project are an engine, a frame and a manufacturer’s parts book. The engine and frame are the heart of the project; the parts book, with its exploded diagrams, is the brains.

So hit the trade mags, send some emails, find some parts and make some calls. The perfect bike is waiting out there for you. If you’ve done your restoration right, you’ll be transported back to the 1950′s, 60′s or 70′s when both the bike and you were young. Not a bad feeling. Plus remember, unlike almost every other hobby involving restoration and collection, when you’re finished you get to ride it! Or if you’re really going to be crafty, you get to sell it and start all over again with a new project (and just maybe a pretty good profit).

So as was stated before, motorcycle restoration is in many ways the perfect hobby, but in many ways it can be a cycle junkie’s perfect career too. Technical Schools Guide can help you find a small engine technician course at a school near you! You can get started right now!

What Career is Right for Me? Take the Aptitude Test and Find Out!

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

Deciding what you want to do with your life – or even the next 10 years – can be intimidating! Career aptitude tests help you find careers that suit you best by assessing how compatible your personality, skills and interests are with certain careers.

Aptitude tests will ask you to evaluate certain aspects of yourself like if you’re good at communicating with others, if you enjoy math or if you like working on computers. From there, you will generally fill out whether you strongly agree, agree, are neutral, disagree or strongly disagree.

After the aptitude test has calculated your results, you will have a list of careers that fit well with your personality.

Your dream career isn’t waiting for you so stop waiting for it! Fill out an aptitude test now!

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