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.

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SWEENEY, JOHN E, Republican Party
New York

Total number of trips - 5
Total cost of trips - $14,529.49

Average cost per trip - $2,905.90
Total number of days spent traveling - 16 days
Rank of representative - 370 (Out of 638)


Individual trips


Sponsor(s) - Tech Net Massachusetts, Keane Inc
Dates - October 2, 2000 - October 2, 2000 (1 days)
Location(s) - Cambridge, MA

Purpose - Discussion with 20 leading New England technology execs regarding issues impacting the New Economy
Notes -

Travel Cost - $576.40
Lodging Cost -
Meal Cost - $65.58
Other Cost - $40.75
Total Cost - $682.73

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - ABC News
Dates - May 13, 2000 - May 14, 2000 (2 days)
Location(s) - Not specified

Purpose - taping of "This Week"
Notes -

Travel Cost -
Lodging Cost - $330.43
Meal Cost -
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $330.43

Additional family members - No


Sponsor(s) - New York State Olympic Regional Development Authority, United States Olympic Committee
Dates - January 25, 2002 - January 27, 2002 (3 days)
Location(s) - Lake Placid, NY

Purpose - inspect Lake Place Olympic facilities
Notes - accompanied by child Johnny Sweeney. Transportation and lodging costs only reflect cost for child.

Travel Cost - $20.00
Lodging Cost - $78.00
Meal Cost - $40.00
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $138.00

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - U.S.-Mexico Cultural and Educational Foundation
Dates - December 3, 2003 - December 7, 2003 (5 days)
Location(s) - Mexico City, Mexico - Merida, Mexico

Purpose - NAFTA Conference & Bi-National Congressional Retreat
Notes - Spouse Gaia Ford accompanied.

Travel Cost - $4,393.94
Lodging Cost - $822.42
Meal Cost -
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $5,216.36

Additional family members - Yes


Sponsor(s) - Inter-American Economic Council
Dates - January 12, 2005 - January 16, 2005 (5 days)
Location(s) - Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

Purpose - Participation in the Business Roundtables during the Inter-American Economic Council's 2005 Congressional Delegation to the Dominican Republic & Antigua
Notes - Itinerary has "Attached" as entry, but nothing was attached to form.[assumed destination]

Travel Cost - $4,583.40
Lodging Cost - $1,924.69
Meal Cost - $1,653.88
Other Cost -
Total Cost - $8,161.97

Additional family members - Yes

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.