Vocational education programs help close skills gap

Capital News Service
LANSING – At the Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District, choosing a career education program is almost like choosing a college major, school officials say. “Students are learning how to do something,” said Patrick Lamb, principal of the district’s tech center. “They are taking their education and tying it to a skill of relevance.”
It’s an example of a statewide push to develop career and technical education programs to meet the need of skilled labor openings. “We hope to have more vocational classes for our students,” said Tim Buckingham, a mentor at Big Rapids Virtual School, an alternative education program for the district.  Buckingham provides guidance to students who are seeking alternative education options.