There’s one vital skill,… that transcends many jobs and fields and may be every worker’s best shot at financial security. Schools don’t usually teach it, and employers don’t usually mention it in job postings. Yet it will help you get hired, outperform your peers, find the best opportunities and stay a step or two ahead of the computers, robots and other machines that are making many jobs obsolete…. employers usually recognize them as creative problem-solvers who see the big picture and make insightful connections in ways even a supercomputer can’t. They might have technical skills, but they also tend to read a lot, write well and show curiosity in many unrelated things.
Worst Lesson #2. Second chances are a common occurrence
Most colleges have policies that allow students to retake courses they fail without much consequence. This is one college’s policy on retaking courses: “If you earn a failing grade (F, WU, or FIN) in a course and then retake the course in a subsequent semester, earning a grade of A, B, C, or CR, both grades will remain on the transcript. However, the failing grade will no longer be calculated in your … GPA.” Many other schools have similar policies.
At work, if an employee continues to submit work that’s sub-par and doesn’t meet expectations, that employee will more than likely be fired after a short period of time. He or she would not be able to continue to resubmit his or her work until it was correct on the company’s dollar.
The same applies to late policies and missed assignments. Many college classrooms are far more lenient than any workplace would ever be.
During the recession many companies retooled their operations installing more and more automation. Today, there are many (certainly not a total replacement for those 10s of thousands of “old” manufacturing jobs lost) new and highly skilled–and high paying–jobs in the new manufacturing workplace.
Portland’s Christine McKinley wears many hats: she’s a mechanical engineer, a musician, a composer, an author and a former TV personality. She’s also on a mission to make math and science more fun. Her book Physics for Rock Stars is part memoir, part science lesson, and part advice column. It reads like a practical guide to the world from a clever, nerdy friend. Physics Lessons From The Science Teacher You Wish You’d Had …
Here are links to two engineering design firms.
- The first-–IDEO/Palo Alto– –is perhaps best known due to CBS “60 Minutes” coverage of their work. Here’s a link to a video interview and 2012 update to the original 1999 show done by the producers at CBS 60 Minutes.
- The second–Beyond Design/Chicago I recommend you look at their design process and the cool stuff they do with kids Dig8
Check out the cool student desk IDEO designed! Wish we had them here at Skyview!
- Why Designers and Engineers is a Match Made in Heaven (huffingtonpost.com)
Associate’s Degrees and Technical Certificates Can Yield More than 4-Year Degrees
Another article trying to place “everyone goes to college” in a more pointed context: There’s no arguing that those with a high school diploma earn more than those without and that those with some post-high school education/training will earn more than those with just a high school diploma. This new research points out something pretty obvious to those who question the “everyone goes to college” brainwashing: some 4 year degrees aren’t worth it, but some 2 year and certificate training can earn more than a 4 year degree.
Higher education is one of the most important investments people make. The right choices can lead to good careers and good wages while the wrong ones can leave graduates with mountains of debt and poor prospects for ever paying off student loans.
I push my students hard to develop the “soft skills” needed in today’s highly competitive global economy. Here’s a great article that underscores several of my classroom expectations:
- meet your deadlines
- pay attention to details and focus (yeah, I’m not perfect either)
- be open to the possibility…that it’s not all about you
- check out the others