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Farmington Hills, Farmington

April 23, 2014

Family commission to host Technical Education Night

By Sherri Kolade
C & G Staff Writer

FARMINGTON/FARMINGTON HILLS — The Commission on Children, Youth and Families will host an event at 7- 9 p.m. April 29 at the Costick Center, 28600 W. 11 Mile Road in Farmington Hills, to discuss various pathways that lead to career success — which doesn’t always mean a four-year degree, Commission member Lawrence Gage said recently.

“We have a culture in our community that certainly values highly the traditional college path to success, but very often it leaves behind the kids who, for various reasons, are not suited for that,” Gage said. “They are not motivated for that particular pathway to success, and what we are attempting to do is create a level of awareness with some of the experts we are bringing to the panel.”

Gage, a former Oakland Community College counselor for four decades, said the event would discuss getting them on the right track to obtaining employable skills.

The focus will be on job satisfaction, earnings potential, reducing college debt load and exploring technical education as a step toward a career or toward additional education at a later point, according to a press release.

Presentations will feature testimonials from young men and women who have achieved success in technical careers from operating engineering to web design, according to the press release.

Some panelists include Pamela Micaleff, a career counselor at Oakland Community College’s Orchard Ridge Campus, and Naomi Khalil, director of Technical Education at Farmington Public Schools.

Through videos, question-and-answer sessions, and breakout groups, participants will learn about career funding options, scholarship possibilities and Michigan jobs data.  Parents will also learn that their children can become marketable and employable in career areas that might not have been previously considered, according to the release.

Commission member Ed Cherkinsky said one of the things the group is trying to do is disband the idea that four-year colleges are the only educational pathways to career success.

“Not everyone is college material. The way the economy and technology are changing, it is pretty difficult now to get a degree in English and go out and get a good-paying job,” Cherkinsky said. “At this point, I would much rather have training to be a plumber or electrician than to have a degree in English; I don’t know what my job prospects would be.”

For more information, contact the City Manager’s Office (248) 871-2500, (248) 661- 5114 or go to www.ci.farmington-hills.mi.us/.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Sherri Kolade at skolade@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1046.