By Blain Anderson
November 09, 2005
If I were a high school student looking at my future job prospects in Alaska after graduating, I'd sure consider hitting the road, too. Governor Murkowski may have felt he was cheering up the troops in his recent address to Ketchikan students, but his "highlights" were pretty discouraging.
According to him you could take your 12 years of high school and work in a mine? Drive a bull dozer? Destroy the wilderness of ANWR? Be a welder or fix machinery?
Ooooh, where do I sign up? Sounds like a fun life to me...
These are short-term labor-heavy positions that might appeal to a few kids wanting to make some bucks for a year or two. But for smart kids hoping to work in fulfilling careers and actually make a difference in the world I see little to do in this state. Where are the high-tech jobs? Where are the management positions? Where are the biologist and geneticist and economist positions?
I'd encourage anyone smart enough to consider engineering as a field to use their smarts for more noble and worthwhile fields than creating a huge hole in the ground and polluting the state's pristine areas. Perhaps you'd be happier solving the honey-bucket problem facing nearly every village, or designing clean energy systems that can be used in these places. Or working for Engineers Without Borders to give people in developing countries a little dignity and provide for the health of the environment.
It is no wonder smart Alaskan students flee this state after graduation given the bleak resource extraction plans of this governor. Though, I do know of six high-level positions in the Department of Natural Resources that need filling.
But asking smart kids to fix machinery makes no sense.
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