When I was 16, I thought I’d take the summer off. My mom thought otherwise, enrolling me and a buddy into bricklaying class. We learned a trade, started a business and were self-employed for four summers.
Working outside, scraping together materials, building something lasting with a team – that was exhilarating. Sure, I’ve had a desk job for decades, but I was happier knowing I had a real skill to fall back on.
Columnist David Brooks wrote about the crisis among young men who’re increasingly lonely, disaffected, falling behind and misusing guns. I recommend training them early to build something constructive.