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Vocational Guidance and Defense Occupations--The Schools and the Defense

by Harry D. Kitson - 1941

During the summer of 1940 the faculty of Teachers College developed the Creed of Democracy under the leadership of Professor Thomas H. Briggs. This and the associated documents have had a far-flung influence. Every department of Teachers College probably has members on Defense Committees and Emergency Committees and in similar activities in their particular fields—members who will gladly be of service to teachers and school administrators anywhere by furnishing information on specific questions. To facilitate the process of getting together persons interested in the same fields, Dean William F. Russell asked Professor Paul R. Mort to serve as a correlating agent. As a result, several committees were appointed. During the year additional faculty members were drawn into various defense activities outside the College. Conferences of the committee chairmen during the Summer School of 1941 led to the plan of holding a meeting at which persons concerned with various aspects of the defense problem would present brief statements of their activities. The purpose was to help teachers build a picture of what might be done by the schools on their own initiative. Professor Benjamin R. Andrews was instrumental in preparing the present document to supplement these verbal statements with brief accounts of what some of the Teachers College Staff are doing in defense work and with suggestions of services that teachers everywhere can render to promote community stability and welfare at present and also the protection and improvement of the position of America on into the post-emergency period. Teachers should be ready to initiate local leadership in their own communities by consulting with municipal officials and bringing together informal groups to canvass the local situation, getting in touch with their governors and such national agencies as may be necessary, in order to provide local committees to undertake such community services.

1. Find the lines of work in your community which call most desperately for workers. Such information can be secured from the nearest office of the State Employment Service, local employers' association, and Chamber of Commerce.

2. Ask for job descriptions, requirements, pay, etc., which you can use in advising youth regarding these jobs. These also may be obtained from the State Employment Service or personnel offices in local concerns.

3. Your community may have training courses for defense occupations. Inform youth about these. If it does not, ask your State Director of Vocational Education to help you outline appropriate sequences and secure federal funds. For information, write for free folder from U.S. Office of Education, "Defense Job Training, a condensed guide to programs authorized by Congress to train persons for work in defense industries and in the armed services." Also write the Federal Committee on Apprenticeship, U.S. Department of Labor, for free booklet, "Out of Crisis, Opportunity! Apprenticeship in a Long-Range Defense Program."

4. Does your course on "Information about Occupations" embody the changes in the occupational pattern made by defense activities? A list of occupations essential to defense may be found in Occupations, the Vocational Guidance Magazine, pp. 121-124, November, 1940. Articles on this topic will appear during the coming months in Occupations.

5. The U.S. Office of Education has prepared several packets containing original materials which will be loaned on request. Of particular interest are the following: Packet 7—SA-2—Youth Vocational Training Programs for National Defense; Packet 7—SA-4—Bibliographies on Vocations Directly Related to National Defense; Packet 7—SA-5— Aids to Vocational Guidance in Relation to National Defense.

Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 43 Number 1, 1941, p. 16-17
https://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 9071, Date Accessed: 1/16/2022 5:47:40 PM

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  • Harry Kitson
    Professor of Education, Teachers College

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