Sen. Bernie Sanders champions tuition-free public college, but that’s not why he came to talk with high school students in Morrisville on Monday.
Sanders was at People’s Academy meeting with high schoolers to talk about their plans after graduation. He called it his first high school town meeting, at which he wanted to learn about the students' goals after high school and gauge what opportunities they’re taking advantage of.
Sanders brought with him a panel of state and regional education and workforce development officials, several of whom spoke about post-secondary opportunities. One thing not on the students' radar is state-sponsored apprenticeships, including programs that offer work and free college classes.
"How many of you knew about that?" Sanders asked.
He was met with silence.
"All right, this is the reason why we’re holding this meeting," Sanders continued. "We’re failing. And we’re failing you. All right? There are good jobs and good careers out there. And our job, all of us – I’m failing as well – is to make sure that you know what is available."
Programs the students are taking advantage of include Upward Bound, Dual Enrollment and the Governor’s Institute.