• This Fosters An Online Culture In Which Participants Take Charge Of Their Own Learning.

New research finds that college students who have a strong sense of independence are less likely to have misbehaviors on course.

• This Fosters An Online Culture In Which Participants Take Charge Of Their Own Learning.

I was taught from a young age that adults were supposed to do some type of grown-up work. I should learn how to drive, how to mow the lawn, how to thread a needle, or a third, and that was it.

According to a recent Pew Research Center report, the vast majority of Americans between the ages of 18 and 29 have had no formal education beyond the eighth grade. The majority are currently dropping out of school.

This makes sense, given that the number of Americans ages 25 to 64 years of age with high school diplomas has dipped by about 50 percent in the last 30 years.

Plus, millennials aren’t doing that well on the job front either.

The Grumpy Cat of Boomer Boomers today pic.twitter.com/34HHntALq5 — Cecily Newman (@CallMeCecily) November 5, 2018

Here are some stats on the lack of high school attainment from the report:

Almost two-thirds of millennials ages 25 to 29 have a bachelor’s degree. Only 56 percent of boomers/millennials had bachelor’s degrees when they were the same age in 1986.

Today, more people over the age of 45 have at least a bachelor’s degree than have a high school diploma. But between 2007 and 2015, the gap between those numbers grew by more than half, from 13 percentage points to nearly 27 percentage points.

And according to the National Endowment for Financial Education, more than 12 percent of high school graduates who don’t go on to college haven’t been able to land a job.

Perhaps the data are telling us something—that young adults take time off of the job market to catch up on study, or that Millennials tend to think about their future ahead of time, or that just about everybody from Boomers to Gen Xers to millennials thinks too much about the past.

Regardless, these aren’t the millennials of yesteryear. Or rather, they aren’t—at least not entirely. In the early 1970s, I was taught that the first generation to play video games wasn’t called “Millennials,” it was called “Newtons.”

So, in that light, it seems a common touchstone seems to be instilling the desire and the ability to learn—especially while also trying to find a job.

But ultimately, as college degrees become increasingly rare—not only among Americans, but especially among Millennials—the old norms of what we expect an adult to do—if and when you retire, do you take a job to pay the bills and fulfill your life goals? How do you go about selecting a path that fulfills your mind?

And so, the workforce that serves as first line of defense against the tail end of a baby boomer generation, needs to become fresher—and it means changing who serves in positions of responsibility.

It’s not enough to simply hand over the keys to a multi-billion dollar company to a person who is little more than a data processor. That person doesn’t have the ability to think critically, make decisions, take ownership of the innovation process, lead, inspire, and motivate others, innovate, set a path forward and creative vision, or master a skill set that can sustain him/her for the long haul.

Those folks are, after all, still getting ready to live off your social security checks.

So, how do we get there?

In today’s tech-driven, post-industrial, hyperconnected, and plugged-in world, it can be said that our skills development is increasingly being driven by our participation in a community of peers.

As a CEO, a former researcher, an educational administrator, an entrepreneur, and a parent, there’s no question that’s where I’d like to see my team become very prominent. I’d like to see my startup employees involved in the communities they serve, have conversations with experts in their sector—people who can help us do our jobs better, help us lead on new issues and fill policy holes, innovate around new industries, and push for change as they become prevalent in their communities.

These are the type of people who, as we all get older, will need to rethink how they approach and approach an institution or enterprise.

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