The current AWS weekly e-mail newsletter had an article about how little young people know about jobs in the construction industry. The young people surveyed were in Britain but I wouldn't think the numbers would be much different in this country. Only about half of the 18 to 35 year olds were able to describe what a welder did. And, as always, the newsletter also had another article about not having enough young talent to replace the older craftsmen leaving the workforce. Hard to get them interested in something they know nothing about. Maybe someone needs to start talking to high school counselors so they'll get the word out to the students what a job as a welder, laborer or dredger is. Maybe bring back a general metals class at the junior high level as well. Or maybe the parents should take a little responsibility and see that their child is exposed to a little bit of the real world rather than just what's going on with that little screen in the palm of their kid's hand.
How can you be 25 years old and not know what a welder does? If they don't have enough natural curiosity to find out about some of these things, maybe you wouldn't want to recruit them into the trades anyway.