Last week, Google announced its intent to join Apple, IBM, Microsoft, and more than 350 other private sector companies in the Pledge to America’s Workers Initiative. Through this program, the White House and its private sector partners have committed to providing Americans—from recent high school graduates to those nearing retirement—with a pathway into the skilled workforce of the future, bypassing the traditional four-year college track.
The current K-12 to college pipeline is failing to prepare students for that workforce, and for many, is instead leaving them saddled with debt that prevents them from accessing the training and skills necessary to change careers or actively participate in—and stimulate—the economy.
As I recently wrote, “more than 44 million Americans have student loan debt, meaning about one-sixth of Americans 18 years or older have student loan debt. All told, Americans owe more than $1.5 trillion in student loans.”