When are college students supposed to learn math?

Dear editor,
I practically choked on my morning toast while reading North Island College’s notice regarding what math levels certain skills need.

Dear editor,I practically choked on my morning toast while reading North Island College’s notice regarding what math levels certain skills need.I would like to know what person decided that the trades of Welding C, Professional Cook 1, Metal Fabrication, Plumbing and Piping need no math skills except  as per ‘assessment.’I know that NIC is referring to the entry level of training but if students do not know and understand the math concepts at the beginning, then when are they going to learn them?I am absolutely astonished that NIC would publish such a notice in the paper, if they think that No Math Skills are required for these trades and skills, they do not understand at all what the jobs consist of.I spent 40+ years in the piping trades and I can assure you that the math that is required is at least to the (so-called) Grade 12 levels. I was required to know how to use algebra, geometry, and trigonometry, not to mention the use of flow formulas, circumference and volume formulas.How does a student with “no math skills” deal with determining rolling offsets, fabrication of three- and six-piece 90-degree and lateral joints, angles of cut, coverage of sprinkler heads, sizing piping for gas flow, water flow, grades and elevations, etc?  All of these require a high degree of math skill.How do I know this? Apart from working in the trade, I was also a vocational instructor for 15 years and had to deal with students coming from high school with so called “high school” math. I ended up spending a great deal of time teaching the use of pi, square root, volumes and areas, as these concepts were not given to my apprentices at the public school level. I had to sacrifice time that was dedicated to engineering formulas for boiler water treatment, pump capacities, flow and distribution of liquids and gases through pipe, etc.I am concerned about many trades that are put under the No Math Required and Minimal Math category. Math is downplayed and poorly taught at the high school level but is essential to most careers today.Journeyman trades professionals are well paid and therefore are desirable career choices. Young people and their parents who pay for the courses should expect training to be of a much higher standard than is reflected in the NIC promotional advertising. D. Whitworth,Courtenay

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