We advocate devoting more resources to these types of the education outlets.

The Hannibal Career and Technical Center’s Building Trades program is marking its 50th anniversary this year.

The program teaches students almost everything needed to construct a home, from the foundation to the electrical work, plumbing to bricklaying. The homes built by the students go on the market and hold their own compared to almost any other house available. Students work to make the homes modern, appealing and ready to move in.

We celebrate this program for several reasons.

The skills gained by these students help build our communities, lead to employment opportunities, and in some case light a fire for some students to open up their own business.

In return, the community gets desperately-needed new housing for young families to move to.

It’s a win-win.

But beyond the obvious, the 50th anniversary of the Building Trades program demonstrates the value of trades-based education across the board.

This type of education helps create well-rounded citizens who actively give back to the community.

Lawmakers have expressed their support of trades-based education in the past. We advocate devoting more resources to these types of the education outlets.

College is not for everyone.

But education is.

A trades-based education, such as that provided by HCTC, is an excellent way to train the next generation of builders, electricians, engineers and more.

Some people turn their noses up at people who pursue trade or vocational education, as if it is somehow “less than” other careers. We disagree completely.

Take one look at the results of the Building Trades program and it’s hard to believe more students don’t participate. Hannibal is lucky to have a thriving career and technical center.

We hope others see the same value.