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2017/09/08 第186期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
紐時周報精選 To Innovate, the Workplace Comes to Class拚創新 職場搬進課堂
A Summer Battle Against the Heated Hordes禁止游泳!羅馬保護噴泉
To Innovate, the Workplace Comes to Class拚創新 職場搬進課堂
文/Dana Goldstein

In a sleek laboratory at Marshall University last month, four high school teachers hunched over a miniature steam-electric boiler, a tabletop replica of the gigantic machinery found in power plants.

They hooked the boiler to a small, whirring generator and tinkered with valves and knobs, looking for the most efficient way to turn coal, natural gas, nuclear or solar energy into electricity.



The teachers, who were attending a summer training program, are helping West Virginia in another kind of transformation. Long one of the poorest states, it is now leading the way in turning vocational education from a Plan B for underachieving students into what policymakers hope will be a fuel source for the state’s economic revival.


Simulated workplaces, overseen by teachers newly trained in important state industries like health, coal and even fracking — the energy industry's technique to extract oil and gas from rock by injecting high-pressure water, other mixtures, and chemicals, are now operating in schools across the state. Students punch a time clock, are assigned professional roles like foreman or safety supervisor, and are even offered several vacation days of their choice in addition to regular school breaks. (Many take time off during deer hunting season.)


Traditional math and English teachers have been reassigned to technical high schools, to make sure students on the vocational track still gain reading, writing and math skills.

And this fall, students enrolled in simulated workplaces will need to participate in one of the program’s boldest elements: random drug testing.



Given the extent of the state’s opioid crisis, employers “wouldn’t take anything we were doing seriously until we passed that hurdle,” said Barry Crist, principal of the Fayette Institute of Technology in Oak Hill.


West Virginia’s heavy push on vocational education comes as leaders of both parties have talked about making it a priority, a shift from the No Child Left Behind era of education reform, in which college for everyone was often the goal. In 2015, fewer than half of 25- to 34-year-olds nationwide had earned an associate or bachelor’s degree, according to census figures.


“Vocational training is a great thing,” President Donald Trump said a week before Election Day. “We’re going to start it up big league.” In June, he signed an executive order that redirected federal job training funds toward apprenticeships, in which students learn skills at actual work sites.




這篇主要談美國西維吉尼亞州企圖加強職業教育(vocational education)以改善經濟,而方法是讓職業學校學生在校內「模擬」(simulate)在這州的重要產業上班,指導老師也在這些產業接受最新訓練,使畢業生符合產業需求。

「模擬」是關鍵字,具體作法包括讓學生上下班打卡(punch a time clock)、扮演專業人員、像上班族一樣請假,希望雇主認真看待(take someone or something seriously)這樣訓練出來的畢業生。

美國的副學士學位(associate degree)主要由兩年制社區大學(community college)提供,學士學位(bachelor's degree)主要由四年制大學(university)或學院(college)提供。美國的高中生畢業後,除了可選擇四年制大學,也可選擇兩年制社區大學。一般而言,社區大學學費較便宜,課程較職業導向,採小班制,學生畢業後可直接就業,或進入四年制大學的大三就讀。

A Summer Battle Against the Heated Hordes禁止游泳!羅馬保護噴泉
文/Jason Horowitz

On a sweltering Monday afternoon, a beautiful day for a swim, Mario Messina noticed some holidaymakers teetering dangerously close to the turquoise waters and sounded five short blasts of his whistle.


“Come down!”Mr. Messina said, with an elegant flip of the hand to a woman leaning over the ledge to test the water temperature.“Come down!”


Despite his Ray-Bans, virtuosity with a whistle and sunny Sicilian disposition, Mr. Messina is not a seaside lifeguard but a Roman police officer in a pith helmet. He is entrusted to protect the Trevi Fountain, one of the world’s most cherished and visited monuments, from the scourge of parched, overheated and advancing tourist armies. And now he has reinforcements.


Because Summer Is Coming.

Already, the warm weather has brought a menacing whiff of tourists behaving badly. For months, stiff fines failed to stop a fountain-bathing fad in a city blessed with and born of flowing water.



On April 12, a man went skinny-dipping in the Trevi Fountain, resulting in a viral web video and a fine of 500 euros, or $530. (“I was here for the naked guy,”Mr.Messina said, adding that nudity carried a criminal complaint “because it was an obscene act.”)


The“New Barbarians”as some papers have taken to calling the tourists, are not limited to Rome. In Florence,officials have taken to hosing down the Duomo Cathedral and other sites to prevent loiterers from sitting and eating on the steps.


But it is Rome and its fountains that are in the eye of the selfie storm, prompting the city’s embattled mayor,Virginia Raggi, to issue an ordinance.


Until October, there are harsher fines for eating, drinking or sitting on the fountains, for washing animals or clothes in the fountain water or for throwing anything other than coins into the water of the Trevi Fountain and 36 other fountains of artistic or historic significance around the city.


“It is unacceptable that someone uses them to go swimming or clean themselves, it’s a historic patrimony that we must safeguard,”Ms. Raggi said Monday during what she called a surprise “inspection” of the situation at the Trevi Fountain.


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