Please read the article submission and view the video posted by student presenter Alyssa Bunch and after posting, respond to at least two other students.
My topic for this assignment is the Job Corps program, a federal social welfare program designed to help educate low income young adults aged 16-24. It provides them with free education and vocational training to prepare them for future jobs and careers. My first professional article was written by the University of Wisconsin Press Journals Division, and is entitled ‘Job Corps Improves Earnings, Employment, and Use of Public Benefits…Even for Eligible Nonparticipants.’ This article addresses the positive benefits of the Job Corps for American society. It presents a study by Xuan Chen, Carlos A. Flores, and Alfonso Flores-Lagunes that has found that the Job Corps has three major benefits involving earnings, employment and amount of public assistance received. They found an 11.6 percent increase in earnings, 7.2 percent increase in employment, and a 9.9 percent decrease in public benefits dependence. They state that this applies to all eligible youth, not just those who participate, though those who do participate benefit even more (UW Press 2018). Personally, I think this is a valid article outlining the positive effect of the Job Corps on today’s youth. There would be no point in pouring federal tax dollars into this program if it was not effective, and these statistics indicate that the program is doing exactly what it is supposed to, to better lives and strengthen economic stability in our young people, who may not be able to afford college or want to study a trade instead. It seems to me that the Job Corps is a program that just about anyone could support so long as it does its job. I for one would love to see at risk and low income youth thrive in a career they love while earning a living and digging themselves out of poverty instead of falling into the generational cycle.
My second article presents an entirely different perspective on the Job Corps. This article, written by David Muhlhausen and published by The Heritage Foundation, is entitled ‘Job Corps: An Unfailing Record of Failure.’ The biggest issue this article addresses is the fact that the federal government spends about 1.5 billion dollars per year on the Job Corps program, and the benefits do not seem to outweigh the heavy costs. Their studies claim that there is only about a 0.22 cent raise on hourly wages for participants, participants are less likely to have a high school diploma and no more likely to attend college, so on paper it looks as though the Job Corps has not given its participants any truly valuable skills at the price of 1.5 billion dollars. (Muhlhausen 2009) This article was interesting to me, and really made me think about the micro versus macro perspective of this social welfare program. Although this program may prove to be very positive for some individuals, can we really conclude it is positive for our country as a whole? I want to believe in a program like the Job Corps because it seems like a great idea, and a great way to get young people into a career who may not have any other path, but maybe the program is not as strong as it should be, or maybe it is just ineffective when looking at the cost. I also kept in mind that these articles are written almost 10 years apart, so what is true today might not have been true then.
Job Corps Improves Earnings, Employment, and Use of Public Benefits…Even for Eligible Nonparticipants. (2018, January 23). Retrieved February 20, 2019, from https://uwpress.wisc.edu/jhr-news/?p=258 (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site. (Links to an external site.)
Muhlhausen, D. (2009, May 5). Job Corps: An Unfailing Record of Failure. Retrieved February 20, 2019, from https://www.heritage.org/jobs-and-labor/report/job…
Link †o presentation:Professional Article Assignment: Job Corps (Links to an external site.)
Answer this question
With a program like the Job Corps, this can have an extremely positive impact on a single individual’s life, giving them a positive experience and rewarding career. This may not be the common trend though, and at a huge cost to the American tax payers. Are these few cases of positive impact worth the cost in situations like these?