Greatra Mayana

Career & Employment Opportunities

Success in the New Economy HD


Education is core to our economy but in order
to guide our educational system and maximize future income, we must understand
the misalignment between education and our workforce. In my pursuit of higher education, I have
earned two bachelors degrees, 2 masters degrees, and
I’m working on a PhD. In total, this has
cost me over $150,000. I’ve done all this because I believe formal
education is important. Part of this belief came from seeing charts
like this, presenting a correlation between higher degrees and higher
income; showing on average that a person with a college degree is far more money
than the average person without a high school diploma. This perceived higher earnings for having
a four-year degree has fueled a college-for-all philosophy
causing educators and parents to encourage going to the University any university
to major in anything in Pursuit in future job security, social mobility,
and financial prosperity. This
philosophy has increased college enrollment resulting in 66 percent of high school
graduates in this country enrolling in higher education right after
high school; that’s two out of three. Initially, they are deemed the successful
ones but you won’t see advertised is the reality that most drop out,
and only a quarter of those that enroll will finish a bachelor�s degree. Only after these few graduate do many of them
start exploring careers. It is here that they discover that their degree
may not have prepared them for the world of work;
you may be well educated but not every degrees direct preparation for employment. This misalignment between degrees and job
skills causes half of university graduates to be underemployed in what are
called grey collar jobs, taking positions that do not require the education
they have received at a cost that is more than they can afford. Conventional wisdom suggests that a
university degree guarantees a higher salary but with rising education costs,
a shrinking job market, and the oversaturation of some academic majors
in the workforce, this old advice is now a myth for a majority of students. The
economy and the world have dramatically changed. Over the last three generations,
we’ve gone from 13% of the population stepping into a college classroom to 60%
attending some form of higher education. In 1960, when taking into account all
jobs the American economy 20% required four year degree or higher,
20% were technical jobs requiring skill training, and 60% were classified as unskilled. But what’s the right percentage to meet the
labor market demand for tomorrow? In 2018
Harvard University predicts only 33 percent of all jobs will require a
four-year degree or more. While the overwhelming majority will be middle
skilled jobs requiring technical skills and training at the credential associate
degree level. A four-year degree may have many benefits
but think about the people you know from an economic perspective inefficiently
spend time and money to get a degree that perhaps they didn’t really
need for the career that they are in. The true
ratio of jobs in our economy is 1:2:7. For every occupation requires a master’s
degree or more two professional jobs require a university degree and there
are over half a dozen jobs requiring a one-year certificate or two-year degree
and each of these technicians are in very high skilled areas that are in
great demand. This ratio is fundamental to all industries. It was the same in
1950, the same in 1990, and will be the same in 2030. The hope for encouraging
university education is that as the number of university trained workers
increases the demand for their services in the workplace will increase as well. Unfortunately this is not so. The whole pie may get bigger as the labor
force in the economy grows but the ratio will not change. The reality is there will not be
more professional jobs available within the labor market and some professional
jobs have been replaced by technology or are being outsourced. Well-intentioned attempts to send more and
more students straight to the University will not change
the types of jobs that dominate our economy, nor will a college for all mentality
mask these labor market realities. The college for all rhetoric that has been
so much a part of the current education reform movement is often
interpreted as University-for-all. This message needs to be significantly broadened
to a post-high-school-credential-for-all. Students at various educational levels have
left school without employable skills setting up our children
for failure costing them and Taxpayers millions. All while the labor market is desperate for
highly trained skilled Technicians. So how do you position yourself for high-wage
in demand jobs? Let’s say you were considering a career as
either an electrician or business manager. You would find that the average annual income
for electricians is $51,000 only about half of the $105,000 average wage
for management occupations. So at first glance it looks as if getting
a bachelor’s degree in business is a no brainer
but adding skills and ability into the picture as a whole new dynamic. What if you have the potential to become
an excellent electrician but lack the skills and ability to be an excellent
Manager. Then you should be looking at projected incomes
towards the bottom of the pay scale for managers and towards the
top for electricians. You then discover that electricians near the
top of the pay Scale make around $86,000. Far �higher than the income of a manager
near the bottom of the pay scale at $52,000. Now this is just one example but the concept
is true throughout all Industries. The claim that you’ll make more money with
an increased amount of education is not necessarily inaccurate,
it’s just incomplete. That advice is based just on the averages,
but known as perfectly average everyone has unique skills
talents and interests. In fact the
income for the top individuals in a wide variety of skilled jobs that require
industry credential or two-year degree is far higher than the average income
from many occupations that require a four-year degree. Nationally associate
degree earners range between $27,000 and $68,000 while bachelors
recipients earn between $34,000 and $97,000, but this data on the accounts for
the 25th to 75th percentile of full time adult workers. This means that 25% of
associate degree holders are more than $60,000 annually and 25% of
bachelor’s degree holders in less than $34,000 our world has changed and in this
new economy the university degree is no longer the guaranteed path towards financial
success as it was for previous generations and even if you do earn one, that
education alone may not be enough. In today’s highly technical knowledge based
economy, having hands on skills can be more valuable than getting a degree in
something simply to get one. Employers want to know what you can do and
what you can do well not just what degree hangs on your wall. Since new and emerging occupations in every
industry now require a combination of academic knowledge
and technical ability, we need to ensure there were also guiding students
to careers and not just to the University. So before enrolling in classes or deciding
what you’re going to do next in your life;
step one is self exploration. In addition to your interests really analyze
your talents and strengths. Step two is career exploration; understand
the jobs available in the income ranges they pay and
evaluate the skills they require. Identifying an area that appeals to your interests
skills and the labor market may be your first career and then you can
develop a tentative career plan complete with multiple training and education
options. The key is to align your
Interests and abilities with your first career choice and education and training you’ll need
to Receive. This alignment will help bring your future
into focus and ensure your position at the top of the pay scale in your
chosen career. With all this data
shows is that success in the new economy is as much about acquiring the knowledge
skills and abilities needed for in demand occupations as it is to be
Well-educated. Both paths may work for you but education
combined with technical training is how you ultimately secure competitive advantage
in the new economy. Community colleges
are in the ideal position to provide over 70% of tomorrow’s workforce with an
Education combined with applied technical skills, industry driven credentials, and specific
Preparation for employment. Being a skilled craftsman or technician is
highly valuable. Investment in career education programs and
high schools and community colleges will help all students
obtain an education which includes technical training and preparation
for the workplace. Ultimately
this is how all students can be successful. In the new economy both education and
technical skills are the new currency. Will you be ready?

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