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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

  • 09.17.14

    A company short on skilled workers creates its own college-degree program

    At a Toyota plant in Kentucky, young people are learning how to fix robots, earning associate's degrees and graduating with jobs that pay up to $80,000 a year.
  • 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.

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

  • 09.17.14

    A company short on skilled workers creates its own college-degree program

    At a Toyota plant in Kentucky, young people are learning how to fix robots, earning associate's degrees and graduating with jobs that pay up to $80,000 a year.
  • 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.

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CLAYTON, EVA, Democratic Party
North Carolina

Total number of trips - 7
Total cost of trips - $49,852.19

Average cost per trip - $7,121.74
Total number of days spent traveling - 31 days
Rank of representative - 126 (Out of 638)


Individual trips


Sponsor(s) - Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Chicago Stock Exchange
Dates - July 30, 2000 - August 1, 2000 (3 days)
Location(s) - Chicago, IL

Purpose - Fact finding
Notes -

Travel Cost - $1,090.24
Lodging Cost - $356.00
Meal Cost - $150.00
Other Cost - $100.00
Total Cost - $1,696.24

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - Amistad America, Inc.
Dates - March 23, 2000 - March 26, 2000 (4 days)
Location(s) - Mystic Seaport, CT - Ledyard, CT - Hartford, CT

Purpose - Educational
Notes - Accompanied by husband Theosus Clayton

Travel Cost - $2,450.40
Lodging Cost - $448.00
Meal Cost - $545.36
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $3,443.76

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - AT&T, Microsoft, American Airlines
Dates - March 15, 2000 - March 17, 2000 (3 days)
Location(s) - Not specified

Purpose -
Notes - Technology Tour/Fact Finding Tour

Travel Cost - $4,203.00
Lodging Cost - $264.50
Meal Cost - $135.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $4,602.50

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - Aspen Institute
Dates - March 9, 2001 - March 11, 2001 (3 days)
Location(s) - White Sulphur Springs, WV

Purpose - Bipartisan Congressional Retreat
Notes - Accompanied by husband Thesoseus Clayton

Travel Cost - $495.00
Lodging Cost - $950.00
Meal Cost -
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $1,445.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Botswana Confederation of Commerce, Industry & Manpower
Dates - April 9, 2001 - April 12, 2001 (4 days)
Location(s) - Botswana

Purpose - Congressional fact-finding trip
Notes - Child Joanne Clayton accompanied

Travel Cost - $19,433.62
Lodging Cost - $2,040.56
Meal Cost - $700.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $22,174.18

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Chinese National Association of Industry and Commerce
Dates - January 8, 2001 - January 13, 2001 (6 days)
Location(s) - Taiwan

Purpose - Fact-finding and educational visit
Notes - Other expenses not specified

Travel Cost - $5,400.00
Lodging Cost - $1,350.00
Meal Cost - $450.00
Other Cost - $390.00
Total Cost - $7,590.00

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - Islamic Free Market Institute Foundation, Qatar Chamber of Commerce
Dates - March 24, 2002 - March 31, 2002 (8 days)
Location(s) - Doha, Qatar

Purpose - fact-finding and educational mission
Notes -

Travel Cost - $8,330.51
Lodging Cost - $450.00
Meal Cost - $120.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $8,900.51

Additional family members - No

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

  • 09.17.14

    A company short on skilled workers creates its own college-degree program

    At a Toyota plant in Kentucky, young people are learning how to fix robots, earning associate's degrees and graduating with jobs that pay up to $80,000 a year.
  • 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.