The world of education is changing rapidly. There used to be a linear pattern of high school, then a four-year degree, then getting a job. But that path isn’t always realistic for those who struggle financially.
The rise of supplemental and ongoing education has been a talking point for those who already have degrees. But providing resources for people to study and learn independently has been a growing trend. And resources that reduce the achievement gap by providing educational materials to lower-income students have been shown to increase economic activity in the long run.
Locally, providing educational materials to students in the St. Louis region is a great way to empower people to better their skillset. And the St. Louis County Library recently announced that cardholders would have access to Lynda, an online education resource for business and creative skills as well as software.
It’s a really awesome move by SLCL. Providing access to nearly 4000 video courses to anyone really doesn’t have a downside. Plus, since LinkedIn recently purchased Lynda, the focus on career development will definitely continue to improve.
Innovation in education will likely come both from the public and private sector. Starbucks introduced their new college achievement plan about a year ago and it seems like some employees are taking advantage. Partnering with Arizona State University online has provided opportunities for those who have sought them:
“The most important thing for studying in this new digital learning environment that we’re creating is to show up for work,” observed Regier, University Dean for Educational Initiatives at ASU. “One thing we’ve found is that online coursework actually requires more maturity and self-discipline than the face-to-face classroom.”
And that might be a challenge for some. For me personally, a mixture of in-person and online courses would probably work best as opposed to simply working online. But if some of these courses and opportunities can be accomplished with a lesser cost, it’s definitely a step in the right direction.
We’ve been involved with education marketing for at a number of levels for quite a while. If you’re trying to navigate the learning landscape, we’re always happy to chat.