Letter: Older, wiser?

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The Independent Online
"Youth power: you gotta have it" (Real Life, 29 June) points out that those over 36 can be too old to get a job, but isn't this partly their own fault? It is a cliche in higher education that these same people are our great untapped market. When will they come forward and take courses?

Every evening and Saturday we have rooms full of part-time students taking courses in job-related skills. The vast majority are in their twenties and already have good jobs. They are preparing for the next one.

Only a few years ago, when the current 36+year-olds were studying, education was seen as a one-off event which took place at the start of adult life. The more recent student realises that retraining is a continuous process, preparing them for new requirements in the job market.

At 9pm, as classes end, some of my students go back to work. This is the price of an interesting self-expressive middle class job.

Jeremy Baker

London Guildhall University