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Letter to the Editor

Well and good. The engineers have left the building. There are no new engineers. Lots of people called "engineer" are actually not. The community colleges have dropped mechanical and electrical associates programs in favor of, duh!, outsourceable IT. And we somehow recover from this by being clever?

Not a chance, Jack.

True, there are always a few bright spots- used statuary suppliers after the Sack of Rome, roofers after the hurricane, outsourcing specialists, and of course, consulting gurus selling the healing buzzword of the moment, like 'lean manufacturing.' The rest of us have become rather seriously lean, and even if I found a great engineer, I can't hire him. A parent can't, in good conscience, advise a high-schooler that science or engineering is anything except an uncertain, low wage business.

The way it looks from here, (which is Norwalk CT, by the way) is that the chain that starts in grade school, links to universities, links to industry, and links to a marketplace, has been broken in several places. Any break is, if not fatal, at least associated with a long time constant to repair.

How could this be? This is, after all, Great America, the source of all opportunity. There is no way a manufacturing economy could fall apart as fast as, for example, the entire Soviet Union! There is no way a working, degreed person could not be able to afford a house, or her child, an education!

Get real – we're gonna continue to 'adjust' and we're not gonna like it.

Best regards,
Dr. Richard J. Stein
President, Connecticut Vacuum Products
S. Norwalk , CT

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