I wanted to share a recent blog post by my dear friend and mentor Deborah Meier. Deborah offers an enthusiastic review of a book by Susan Engel, “The End of the Rainbow.” In it. Ms. Engel asks, “What if we made the implicit goal of education happiness rather than monetary attainment?” It’s a fascinating viewpoint that gives all of us on the right and the left, pause for thought. Here’s my thought…
Apprentice Learning is not teaching career education just to help kids make money. We do want Apprentices to have options other than a low wage, low skill job. The skills we teach help young people navigate a complex adult world–one that inevitably includes working–and feel confident in many workplace cultures. These professional skills such as communication, self-advocacy, cultural sensitivity, etc. are valuable in many settings, including those outside of work. Academic skills alone are not adequate.
Our students are motivated to practice and learn because they are eager to work. They want to join the adult world. Most so they can make money. That’s their starting point.
Kids believe happiness and money are related. What they don’t fully understand is the strange ways they are. Beyond the lifelong pursuit of these skills, we hope our participants grow to understand that attaining happiness is more than just making money.