Reimagine the Future of Higher Education
Georgia Tech, USA Funds, Global Silicon Valley, Northeastern University, the US Department of Education, and the international design firm IDEO are partnering to sponsor the OpenIDEO Future of Higher Education Challenge. The global initiative was announced Nov. 15 at the White House by Department of Education Under Secretary Ted Mitchell and will run through February 2017.
The Challenge’s Research Phase is now underway. Share stories and reflections, emotions, perspectives and other personal contributions related to education after high school and throughout one’s lifetime. These contributions can be shared through the OpenIDEO Challenge Portal.
Postsecondary education is one of the best investments a person can make, serving as a gateway to social mobility and economic opportunity. This year, U.S. public high schools recorded a graduation rate of 83.2 percent, the highest number ever in recorded history. As these students transition into the American workforce, they’re likely to have four job changes in less than 10 years. Of those jobs, two billion will disappear by 2030—that’s approximately 50 percent of employment opportunities today. Learners are more diverse, because the country is more diverse. They are also older, because as old jobs disappear, people return to school. They do not always live and work near a college campus, so access to quality education is not guaranteed. Even if education is accessible, many find themselves priced out of a learning experience by tuition increases that outpace inflation by a factor of four.
There are dozens of shifts in the academic and economic landscapes happening all at once. Designing an adaptive postsecondary system that supports lifelong learning will be more critical than ever before.
The people and unmet needs behind these numbers inspire a huge opportunity for redesigning the post-secondary learning experience. Traditional colleges and universities, new providers of education, emerging learning communities, families, students, employers, civic institutions all seem to be poised at a pivotal moment for innovation. How might we prepare students – of all ages – for active civic engagement, real-world employment, and career success in an ever transforming economic ecosystem?
With your help during this Future of Higher Education Challenge, maybe we can find a way to work together to design new ways in which we might better support learners to evolve with the needs of tomorrow. Let’s explore ideas that cut across cultures, income levels, and sectors as we envision a system that supports innovative models and empowers a broad set of learners.