By Denise Dittrich, MSBA Associate Director of Governmental Relations
The Senate hearing in which the Career Pathways and Technical Education Advisory Task Force presented their work was considered a success.
The next order of business was a presentation by Karen Hynick of MnSCU (Minnesota State Colleges and Universities) titled, “MnSCU’s Charting the Future for a Prosperous Future.”
This was a summary of the final report created by a workgroup charged by Chancellor Steven J. Rosenstone to begin a paradigm shift in higher education. This report was the work of 46 members and was unanimously adopted by the board of trustees. Their work reiterated some key findings:
• The Minnesota economy will need more residents with a postsecondary credential.
• High school graduates peaked in 2010 and will decline until 2017.
• Numbers of part-time college students will continue to increase.
• Our population is becoming more diverse.
• Number of students enrolling in multiple institutions will increase which causes us to move towards competency vs. credit based system.
• Technology has not kept up with the students in the classroom.
• 28 percent of course offerings are offered online or a hybrid blend.
• Employers want proof of competency.
Two key recommendations:
1. Ah ha! Seems like common sense and should have been done earlier but collaboration between systems needs to happen.
2. Dramatically increase success of all learners and especially those in traditionally underserved by higher education.
Last on the agenda was the small groups reporting back to the large group. Each group identified recommendations related to student transitions they thought most important moving forward. A few reoccurring themes:
• Modify PSEO guidelines to allow for more access to post-secondary opportunities.
• Adopt a definition of Career and College Readiness.
• Provide more advisors an/or counselors.
• Create more career opportunities at the secondary level i.e. apprenticeships/licensure.
• Collaborate with higher education. i.e. online learning
The next task force meeting is scheduled for January 13, 2014. Visit http://education.state.mn.us/MDE/Welcome/AdvBCT/CareerPathTechEducTaskForce/index.html for more information about this task force.