Saturday, September 29, 2012
To work in student affairs is to collaborate with others. Our partnerships on campus go from physical resources to faculty and everyone in between. Extending partnerships beyond our institution's borders to businesses, community groups and local leaders is not as common, or at least not done in as consistent a manner.
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce just released a report, Canada's Skills Crisis: What we heard (found here), which states one of four key priorities for the chamber is "Improving the connections between educators and employers to balance supply with demand for skilled trades and highly skilled occupations."
Countless opportunities exist for collaboration between educators and business, especially when one considers: collectively student affairs professionals have access to over 1 million students who are enrolled in post-secondary education (PSE) in Canada and the chamber represents "192,000 businesses of all sizes in all sectors of the economy and in all regions"
Getting a job is the main reasons students enrol in PSE today (CUSC, p27). Expanding our network beyond our campus community will help us better meet the most important need our student's express. Tapping into an established network, like your local chamber, will be one of the fastest and most efficient ways to do this. The Canada's Skills Crisis: What we heard report indicates we have a willing partner who can facilitate connections between us and businesses.