Colleges Get Mixed Grades On Teaching Digital Workforce Skills

Career College Central Summary:

  • Many employers in this country want all college grads to have better technical skills than they currently graduate with, and one in four employers say recent college grads are unprepared for even entry-level jobs.
  • Those are among the findings of a new study by, the world's largest internships marketplace, and General Assembly, the leading educational institution devoted to technology, business and design.
  • The two organizations partnered on a study looking into the quality of graduates entering the workforce, and the digital and technical skills that employers are looking for in new hires. They released highlights of the study in an email to FierceCIO.
  • The good news is that the gap between employer needs and graduate qualifications can be bridged, the report says. Much of the burden will fall to the nation's colleges and universities to include more digital and technical skills development within their curriculums.
  • "The development of digital and technical skills, regardless of undergraduate major or preferred industry/career pathway, will meet employers' needs in the war for talent and help students find further value from their higher education experience," the report says. In terms of specific data, the report found that with regard to students:

    • 52 percent of students said they think more practical skills development–including digital and technical skills–should be required
    • 44 percent of students feel well prepared or very prepared by their college or university in digital or technical skills
    • 31 percent of students said that their schools don't offer, or they are unaware of courses, that encourage the development of digital or technical skills
    • 63 percent of students have pursued digital or technical skills on their own, outside the classroom, online and offline, through formal and informal workshops
  • As to the view from employers:

    • While 44 percent of students said they felt well-prepared or very-prepared to land an entry-level position upon graduation, only 18 percent of employers agreed with them
    • An additional 24 percent of employers said recent college grads are definitely unprepared to land an entry-level job
    • 37 percent of employers say it is difficult to find qualified entry-level job candidates

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