New report questions power of postsecondary credentials in the labor market
- A new report from Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce considers the economic worth of postsecondary credentials and also questions whether colleges are doing all they can to communicate that worth to students.
- While collegiate programs of study have exploded in number — quintupling from 410 in 1985 to 2,260 in 2010 — college grads are also expressing "buyer's remorse," feeling as though they didn't have enough information to choose the "right" major for the workplace.
- Access to postsecondary education has also expanded thanks to the internet, which various employers have taken advantage of as a benefit, according to the report.
Interest in higher education continues to grow, especially because it remains a key to social mobility. Those with a college education tend to make more money in the long-term. But for employers, that interest provides an opportunity to both provide a benefit to employees and improve the quality of their talent pools.
Some blue-collar employers have noticed their employees' desire to improve their prospects via education, and have offered specialized credentialing programs to help those workers. Access to education also tends to improve retention, which is why those benefits have grown more popular in the retail and hospitality sectors.
More generally, industries that are struggling to fill talent pipelines have considered the power of credentialing and the prestige it can grant. Industry leaders in construction and manufacturing noted that robust training programs may attract young talent and change the image of those industries.
- Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce It's time to fix higher education's tower of babel
- HR Dive The key to blue-collar retention: Engage employees at critical points
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