Students are not Prepared for the Workplace?
March 1, 2016
I came across some interesting statistics in a report from AAC&U entitled Falling Short? College Learning and Careers Success. Several statistics caught my eye:
• 58% of employers stated that graduates need to be better prepared for entry-level positions
• 66% of employers stated that improvements are needed to prepare college student for advancement and promotion.
• 30% of employers said that college graduates are well-prepare in the area of ethical judgment and decision making.
• 37% of employers said they were well-prepared in teamwork skills.
• 60% of students rated themselves well-prepared in the above competencies.
Being a college instructor myself, I can attest that a class will have those that aspire to learn the most and be the best and there are those who do the minimum amount of work just to get by. I believe the statistics above reflect the large percentage of graduates who simply did not accomplish what they could have accomplished. I have had employers tell me they want the top 1% of this or that course when in reality there are a lot of employment candidates that are not top in their classes. Sadly, with the manufacturing sector desperate for workers, students with only passing grades are getting hired as well as the top grade earners so what do the statistics tell us? Employers are unhappy with many college grads because they are not adequately prepared for work. I am not shocked.
At the risk of preaching too much, I tell students that to have a great career they must, to paraphrase the U.S. Army, be all that they can be, that is, strive to be the best. Those students will have so many doors opened for them they will be overcome with career opportunities.