WESTBURY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – With young people underemployed more than ever now, high school students are considering skipping college and the debt, and instead taking on a trade.

Recession-proof jobs are making for fascinating discussion in Levittown, reports CBSN New York’s Jennifer McLogan.

“This stuff needs to be not only invented, it needs to be repaired,” said Nassau BOCES District Superintendent Robert Dillon. “It’s probably easier to get hold of a doctor than it is a plumber on a Sunday night.”

A group of Long Island community leaders are eager to spread the word that students are needed to enter the workforce now.

Skilled repair men and women are needed for electrical, plumbing and carpentry fields. Computer technicians, engineers and mechanics who fix cars, planes, and trains are also sought, as are people who make our food.

Rosella Cangialosi graduated East Meadow High School and entered the Board of Cooperative Educational Services, or BOCES.

“I grew up in a family where food was very very important,” said Cangialosi. “Growing up I knew I wasn’t going to a regular academic college, I knew I wanted a culinary college. From high school I was introduced to BOCES.”

Westbury Jeep recently hired a slew of young mechanics.

“The auto industry is booming it’s not going anywhere, so no one’s going to take my job,” said mechanic Mitchell Haslam.

“I always had a thing for vehicles to begin with, I always used to tinker in the backyard,” said mechanic Saj Kayou.

MORE: Boards Of Cooperative Educational Services Of New York State

“Every student needs to have exposure to careers, even if you’re planning on going to college,” said Rosalie Drago os BOCES. “A program such as BOCES is important so you can choose the right path, meet at that intersection of what a student is good at, what they’re passionate about and what they have a skill for and find the right pathway into those jobs.”

Recession-proof jobs the focus of a Levittown symposium.

“The Long Island Rail Road needs many electricians coming up and new fields opening up in solar and green energy,” said John Nassau Labor Commissioner John Skinner.

Statistics show young people face mountains of college debt, but there are opportunities for middle-skilled workers who have the right training.

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