Newsflash: Preparing students for the future workforce is a society-wide effort

Today’s jobs are changing, and they are changing at such a rapid pace that many of the jobs our students will hold in the future do not even exist today.

But just because we don’t know what those jobs are doesn’t mean we can’t do our best to prepare today’s students, and tomorrow’s work force, for the opportunities awaiting them. A large part of that preparation will rely on equal technology access to all students.

In order to empower our students and give them the confidence they’ll need to take their skills into the workforce of the future, we must help students see themselves as “change agents”–an idea esposed by many educators, including Dr. Kedra Gamble, an assistant professor of professional practice and community school partnership liaison.

New workforce challenges and new opportunities are the result of various recent developments including the digital revolution, changing work patterns and globalization.

More and more, labor is characterized by people working under non-standard contracts. It is a connected, technology-stimulated, accelerated marketplace where the traditional model of completing education and then entering the workforce is becoming obsolete.

Home tuition, self-study and online and lifelong learning are fast becoming staples of the new economy.

As a result of changing educational patterns, enterprises and corporations are changing.

Rich Preece, Global Accountant Segment Leader at Intuit, has noted that there are three pillars for being a Firm of the Future: embracing online technologies, regular use of value pricing, and leveraging digital marketing. Business-related requirements also need to be responded to as new roles/disciplines appear within organizations.

Parents know their children need access to high-quality educational opportunities to become competitive and to succeed in a rapidly-changing world. Technology plays a large role in this access and can help students overcome socio-economic challenges.

It begins with teachers

The Rutgers University Graduate School of Education has launched the Urban Social Justice Teacher Preparation Program, which focuses on the gaps between students from different backgrounds, including the opportunity gap and the lack of resource availability in some schools and neighborhoods.