2018 Future of Work MeetUps

Data & Publications

While meaningful improvements are being made to the state’s workforce development system, the pace of reform must be increased to reduce the number of “stranded workers” and increase the available qualified workers for business and industry. Millions of Californians need additional skills to earn a living wage, and accelerating applications of new technologies will require most Californians to learn throughout their careers.

Here are some publications and data that share the challenges of the stranded and current workforce and the power of industry-education partnerships. 

Barriers to Accessing Higher Education

Enrollment and retention barriers adult students encounter, published in The Community College Enterprise, asserts that community college “program planners must understand characteristics of adult students, recognize social issues, and identify with cultural issues to effectively develop training and degree programs that not only attract students, but also encourage student retention. Community colleges have the ability to reduce or eliminate student barriers and subsequently prepare adults for the workforce.”

Adult Learners in Higher Education: Barriers to Success and Strategies to Improve Results by Jobs for the Future, Edventures and FutureWorks “looks at the nature of the obstacles that adult learners face in trying to earn credentials with labor-market value, the promise of innovative practices that target adult learners, and changes in institutional and governmental policies that might help more adults earn higher education credentials.”

Beyond Financial Aid: Helping Adult Students with the Cost of College, published by Education Commission of the States, examines how states can look beyond financial aid to a broader set of financial supports to help more low-income adult students. 

Adult Completion in the 21st Century: What We Know and What We Don’t Know by Higher Ed Insight synthesizes extensive research about the needs of adult college students, particularly those returning to college after stopping out, as well as to identify areas where further inquiry is needed in order to demonstrate effective ways to support degree completion for adults.

Degrees of Hope: Redefining Access for 21st Century Students is a film by the Institute for Higher Education Policy that “depicts the lives of five college students – a first-generation student, a community college transfer student, a veteran, an online learner, and an adult learner – and the barriers they faced accessing higher education.”

Access to Attainment: An Access Agenda for 21st-Century College Students by the Institute for Higher Education Policy asserts that barriers facing 21st century students are not necessarily different than those of previous generations. But, the experience of those obstacles has certainly grown in intensity, and the consequences of not overcoming them have grown, too.

Nontraditional No More: Policy Solutions for Adult Learners by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) studies individuals who have earned a substantial number of college credits but have yet to return to college and analyzes how to remove the barriers that have kept them from completing their degrees.

College Access for the Working Poor: Overcoming Burdens to Succeed in Higher Education by the Institute for Higher Education Policy looks specifically at the working poor in the context of higher education affordability and access.

Discovering Hidden Barriers to Community College Enrollment and Success in Higher Education Today chronicles Nashua Community College’s discovery of hidden barriers to success and efforts taken to overcome them.

The Power of Industry-Education Partnerships

Investing in a Business Engagement Ecosystem by Business U, California Economic Summit and California Forward reports strong pockets of business engagement success across the state, yet encourages more, detailing strategies for California policymakers and workforce system stakeholders to consider as they continue to develop a 21st-century workforce system.

The Power of the Education-Industry Partnership: Fostering Innovation in Collaboration between Community Colleges and Businesses by Center for American Progress looks at how business-community college relationships can “play a unique role in providing the academic and applied learning that seeks to satisfy the demand for skilled employees and the need for a knowledgeable and engaged citizenry.”

Why Business and Industry Support CTE is a one-page fact sheet produced by Association for Career and Technical Education and Advance CTE that lays out strong reasons business and industry support career technical education (CTE) and the ways interested businesses can collaborate with the CTE community.

Why Higher Ed and Business Need to Work Together by Harvard Business Review purports that “boosting the value of today’s higher education system and, most importantly, helping prepare students for life after class, means adopting a more practical and applied approach to education.”

A Toolkit for Building Successful Community College-Employer Relationships by Brookings cites numerous case studies of exemplary workforce programs that indicate that a key component of a successful workforce development program is a strong relationship between the college and local employers.

Partnerships are Key to Work-Ready Communities in HuffPost asserts that “public-private partnerships between local community colleges and employers are the new currency for both sides of the [student-employer] equation. They ensure that community colleges do not train students in a vacuum and that businesses obtain the skilled workforce they need. These partnerships are a critical step to help make students more employable and work ready on day one.”

Skilled Trades Playbook: Dynamic Partnerships for a New Economy from The Aspen Institute is a playbook for how businesses and community colleges can work together to find, train and place workers in the skilled trades.


Future of Work

“As the types of skills needed in the labour market change rapidly, individual workers will have to engage in life-long learning if they are to remain not just employable but are to achieve fulfilling and rewarding careers that allow them to maximize their employment opportunities. For companies, reskilling and upskilling strategies will be critical if they are to find the talent they need and to contribute to socially responsible approaches to the future of work. For policy-makers, reskilling and retraining the existing workforce are essential levers to fuel future economic growth, enhance societal resilience in the face of technological change and pave the way for future-ready education systems for the next generation of workers.” Towards a Reskilling Revolution: A Future of Jobs for All by the World Economic Forum, in conjunction with the Boston Consulting Group

“Without a clear educational path to reclaiming their displaced jobs, middle-age to older workers often choose not to re-enter the workforce or re-enroll in school, preferring instead to collect unemployment checks.” Community colleges focus on retraining workers displaced by artificial intelligence by Kate Hardiman in The Washington Examiner

“Many studies have shown that the days of training once for a single career path are over. For workers to remain flexible in a world where some of the most prominent future jobs have not been invented yet, they must constant go back to the classroom.” One of the world’s biggest firms is spending $450 million to solve a world problem created by robots by Lianna Brinden in Quartz

“We need responsive solutions and coordination from all parts of society – governments, citizens and private industry alike – to re-envision an educational system based on lifelong learning that can fully prepare workers for the jobs of the future,” Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum in 1 Million Workers Targeted in Tech-Reskilling Drive

“Workers are bracing for a future where it’s estimated each industrial robot displaces six employees and 30 percent of banking jobs could disappear within five years as artificial intelligence gets smarter. Much of the worst disruption will affect lower-paying jobs often held by women or less educated workers.” Women Face Greater Robot Risk for Job Losses, Davos Report Finds by Jeff Green at Bloomberg