The most direct measure of whether a training or educational program has market value is whether its graduates have the knowledge and skills required in the job market. Yet, a recently released Gallup poll sponsored by the Lumina Foundation indicates that only 11 percent of business leaders strongly agree that graduates of higher education programs have the skills and competencies that their business needs. This is a disturbing number. Clearly there needs to be a serious improvement in the linkage between business leaders and educational providers if the skills gap is going to be closed.
How do you close the skills gap between graduating students and employers? “It’s all about employers and educators working together; speaking and understanding the same language,” said Pat Fox, IREC’s director of credentialing development, “the need to communicate regularly and share information about what’s working and what’s not.”