I just read an article that was in the Parade Section of the Sunday paper. It was about a guy in Africa who built a windmill (from a magazine article or book) to generate electricity in Africa 8-10 years ago. He used semi useless junk he found around the area. His neighbors thought he was nuts for collecting the stuff they equated with garbage. Last friday I went back to visit my old school that I retired from. I was informed that my old program was now going to change to an engineering based curriculum. I wasn't surprised, but I guess I am mildly disappointed that the local kids will now have even less of an opportunity to learn to use their minds and hands to build stuff, as that opportunity will now go the way of the proverbial birdhouse. I'm sure that if it weren't for my love of "hands on" that I wouldn't have gotten involved with luthiery in the first place. I was always a hands-on kid, building and creating stuff made from junk in the garage. My dad was a "hands-on" guy too. I remember him making his own table saw out of plywood and scrap lumber. My "best" creation was an exposed electric heater made from a piece of copper wire wound around 2 nails and attached to a old lamp cord ( Thanks to fuses, I am here to type this). At what point will we learn that there is value to this kind of an education? I agree we need more engineers and tech types in this country, but what about that kid that doesn't fit that mold? Who will the next generation of stringed instrument builders be? Somebody who gets bored with guitar hero and wants the real thing? This summer will be my 30th year building guitars. I'm still not bored with it. I can't say the same thing about sanding though .