VIEWPOINT

I remember when I was getting ready to go to college. I planned to be a famous writer and I thought I might study literature or English.

I remember my father gently asking me how I was going to support myself until I became famous and suggesting that maybe I pursue a more practical degree. Colorado State University had a great Technical Journalism program-maybe I could learn to write for industry.

How do dads get to be so smart? As technology has grown during the past few decades, so has the need for people who can interpret it for the average person. Lucky for me.

I know too many nearly starving novelists to be glad I’m not one of them.

If I had a kid getting ready to go to college right now I’d sure mention a career in the wireless industry. Reed Hundt may be a little off in predicting that there will be more people with cellular phones than cars by 2000, but there will be plenty anyway.

Time magazine last week reported on hot careers and where the U.S. job market is going. Wireless technician did not make Time’s list of the 15 hottest fields but wireless jobs do fit into a few of the categories mentioned: executives, systems analysts, computer engineers, marketing managers and product designers.

Talent, luck, connections, street smarts … all of these are important for finding a place in the working world. But education and training is the key.

When I first started writing, people would tell me I had a knack for it and maybe at first I believed that. In truth, wordsmithing just happens to be the trade that I learned. A trade, like most others, that just about anyone could learn with the proper instruction and dedication.

It is a good thing for the wireless industry that schools like the State University of New York at Canton recognize the shortage of training programs for wireless technical personnel.

A few more schools had better jump on board if the Personal Communications Industry Association is correct that there will be more than 300,000 new jobs in the wireless industry in the next three to four years.

On my college graduation day, I took a brief survey of the 20 or so people I stood in line with to receive my diploma and only two of us had jobs lined up. The other guy was going to tend bar.

Sounds like students who enroll in a wireless training program right now-if they can find one-could have their pick on jobs on graduation day.

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