American RadioWorks |
A student learns welding at a vocational high school in Massachusetts. (Photo: Emily Hanford)

Ready to Work

Vocational education was once a staple of American schooling, preparing some kids for blue-collar futures while others were put on a path to college. Today the new mantra is "college for all." But not everyone wants to go to college, and more than half of jobs don't require a bachelor's degree. Many experts say it's time to bring back career and technical education. This American RadioWorks documentary explores how vocational education is being reimagined.

Recent Posts

  • 09.11.14

    A 21st-century vocational high school

    For years, vocational education was seen as a lesser form of schooling, tracking some kids into programs that ended up limiting their future opportunities. Today, in the nation's best vocational programs, things are different.
  • 09.10.14

    Career academies: A new twist on vocational ed

    Across the country, thousands of high schools are transforming into career academies. The idea is that students will be more engaged if they see how academics are connected to the world of work. And they’ll be more likely to get the postsecondary schooling they need to support themselves in today’s economy.
  • 09.09.14

    The troubled history of vocational education

    Vocational education was once used to track low-income students off to work while wealthier kids went to college. But advocates for today's career and technical education say things have changed, and graduates of vocational programs may have the advantage over graduates of traditional high schools.
  • 09.04.14

    Four-year institutions brace for population shifts

    Colleges and universities are accepting many more students of color, many more students from working class and poor families, and many more people who are sometimes referred to as "nontraditional" students.

American RadioWorks |
A student learns welding at a vocational high school in Massachusetts. (Photo: Emily Hanford)

Ready to Work

Vocational education was once a staple of American schooling, preparing some kids for blue-collar futures while others were put on a path to college. Today the new mantra is "college for all." But not everyone wants to go to college, and more than half of jobs don't require a bachelor's degree. Many experts say it's time to bring back career and technical education. This American RadioWorks documentary explores how vocational education is being reimagined.

Recent Posts

  • 09.11.14

    A 21st-century vocational high school

    For years, vocational education was seen as a lesser form of schooling, tracking some kids into programs that ended up limiting their future opportunities. Today, in the nation's best vocational programs, things are different.
  • 09.10.14

    Career academies: A new twist on vocational ed

    Across the country, thousands of high schools are transforming into career academies. The idea is that students will be more engaged if they see how academics are connected to the world of work. And they’ll be more likely to get the postsecondary schooling they need to support themselves in today’s economy.
  • 09.09.14

    The troubled history of vocational education

    Vocational education was once used to track low-income students off to work while wealthier kids went to college. But advocates for today's career and technical education say things have changed, and graduates of vocational programs may have the advantage over graduates of traditional high schools.
  • 09.04.14

    Four-year institutions brace for population shifts

    Colleges and universities are accepting many more students of color, many more students from working class and poor families, and many more people who are sometimes referred to as "nontraditional" students.


Adoption stories


Carol Bromeland
Utica, MN

Birth Country: South Korea
Decade of adoption: 1970s

We have four adopted children who are now adults. The reaction we have often gotten from others when they discover that our children are adopted is, "Oh, what wonderful people you are". We have always been quick to point out that in fact, we adopted for very selfish reasons... we wanted a family and this was our way to get one!

Our first child was a six month old daughter from Korea. When she was three years old, we adopted a brother and sister who were one and two years old. They too arrive on a plane from Korea. These children came to us through Holt International Children's Services in Oregon.

Our adopting has opened many doors that would not have otherwise been opened to us. Probably the most important thing that happened was that many other family members adopted children after finding that adoption is indeed a wonderful way to make or enlarge a family. As a matter of fact, my parents who were in their forties, and the parents of eight children by birth, decided to adopt a ten year old Korean boy after our first child arrived. One of my sisters adopted an African-American child from Georgia, another sibling adopted a son from Chile, and my adopted Korean brother and his wife adopted a bi-racial child from the United States. Another brother married an adopted Korean woman. Several of our cousins and friends also adopted after observing our multi-racial family over the years.

When our three Korean children were in elementary school, we adopted our fourth child, a five year old boy from the United States who we found on Thursday's Child, a television program on a Mpls. television station that features domestic foster children. This son came from an abusive home situation and required special attention to help him grow to his full potential.

Adopting children, some from other countries, led to our becoming advocates for international adoptions and for children in foster care in the United States. We also became very involved in multicultural activities in our local community, school, and nearby university. We have hosted foreign students on international exchanges in our home, and have done international traveling and made international friends, all because our view of the world was expanded, the day we brought our first precious almond-eyed angel into our home.

My children are all adults now. They are all good, caring people. They have become doctors, lawyers, retail employees, and computer designers of computer software. We could not be more proud of them, nor could we love them more.

My mother-in-law gave me the following poem by an unknown author, the day we met our first child at the airport. It explains so well why adoptive families consider these children truly "their own."

Not flesh of my flesh
Not still miraculously my own.
Never forget for a single minute
You didn't grow under my heart,
But bone of my bone
But in it.



Back to Adoption Stories


American RadioWorks |
A student learns welding at a vocational high school in Massachusetts. (Photo: Emily Hanford)

Ready to Work

Vocational education was once a staple of American schooling, preparing some kids for blue-collar futures while others were put on a path to college. Today the new mantra is "college for all." But not everyone wants to go to college, and more than half of jobs don't require a bachelor's degree. Many experts say it's time to bring back career and technical education. This American RadioWorks documentary explores how vocational education is being reimagined.

Recent Posts

  • 09.11.14

    A 21st-century vocational high school

    For years, vocational education was seen as a lesser form of schooling, tracking some kids into programs that ended up limiting their future opportunities. Today, in the nation's best vocational programs, things are different.
  • 09.10.14

    Career academies: A new twist on vocational ed

    Across the country, thousands of high schools are transforming into career academies. The idea is that students will be more engaged if they see how academics are connected to the world of work. And they’ll be more likely to get the postsecondary schooling they need to support themselves in today’s economy.
  • 09.09.14

    The troubled history of vocational education

    Vocational education was once used to track low-income students off to work while wealthier kids went to college. But advocates for today's career and technical education say things have changed, and graduates of vocational programs may have the advantage over graduates of traditional high schools.
  • 09.04.14

    Four-year institutions brace for population shifts

    Colleges and universities are accepting many more students of color, many more students from working class and poor families, and many more people who are sometimes referred to as "nontraditional" students.