WGS17 Sessions: The Future Model of Higher Education


Thank you. So your excellency
and dear colleagues, I’m going to talk a little bit
about the externalities, that are heading high education now We all heard
about artificial intelligence, We all heard about robotics
we all heard about intelligent systems Now we are expecting
that in the next 15 years 45% of the jobs we know
are going to disappear Numerous studies have documented that Oxford University, Mckinsey, Accenture Many many outfits have been discussing that If you think that the jobs
that are going to disappear are the muscle jobs, think again Many jobs that we know, the white-collar jobs Involving financial analysis,
accounting etc, a long list are bound to be hit, are bound
to disappear in the next 15 years This is a major challenge
for higher education because and… on one side many jobs are disappearing
many jobs we know on the other side also it is the case that we have a constant increase of new jobs that we didn’t know of. Data visualization,
forensic technology Now we are hearing more about data
analysis becoming established But I didn’t give you a long list Now why is this a challenge
for higher education? Because no one is going
to be set for life It’s going… you know it used to be
the case that if I go to college, I have a degree, or if I have
two degrees including a masters or even that I have 3 degrees,
I’m set for life That’s no longer the case So what we have to do in higher
education is prepare and educate our students for an ever-changing life How are we going to do it? Well… When we talk about learners I want to
introduce a distinction between two types of learners The learners who are short
on experience long on time those are essentially the undergraduate
students that you know And the second group is the group
containing including the people who are long on
experience, short of time And I’m going to talk about the adults
who are in the workplace and I will come to that, second so let me start with
undergraduate education let me start with those learners who are
short on experience long on time What do we do with them?
Essentially in many systems certainly in the United States we give
them what is called a general education namely that we say that every student
who is leaving college Will have to understand
a certain number of themes But those themes are really
the liberal arts And now, what I would like to do
is introduce a new concept the concept of new literacy Every student graduating today has to
master this new literacy What do I mean by that? They have to understand technology, have a tech literacy They have to understand data literacy There is a difference between the 2
Tech literacies to understand how information science
is impacting everything we do Data literacy is big data,
data analytics that is, you know, changing the way also
we look at every field We also have to understand
what I call the humanics The humanics being essentially
what makes us humans and distinguish
us from machines And you are going to see that this line
is tenuous But when I talk about humanics I’m
talking about the general trades that will allow us to empathize
with others Communication,
to communicate with others in biggest forms, orally, written, etc.
that’s the tradition liberal arts This is not going to make us robot proof We call that the goal is to make us
robot proof So, what I’m saying is that
the first step is that the whole general education has
to be thought to include Tech literacy to include data literacy,
to include humanics But in addition to that what under goods us
what makes us really human what makes us much more robot proof is the ability to create create new concepts,
to create new ideas to be intrapreneurial,
to understand different cultures to be global Those cognitive capacities are essential and higher education
has not focused on them So, the two layers that we need are what
I call the new literacy that includes the Tech literacy,
data literacy, humanics on top of that you need to focus on
what makes us unique as human beings… Creativity
intrapreneurship, cultural agility innovation, systems thinking,
we haven’t done that Now once we know what we need to do the question is how are we going to be
able to achieve it? We are going to be able to achieve it
by bringing an experiential component to the learning Higher education has created
a dichotomy between learning to live,
and learning to earn a living essentially we created a campus,
a beautiful campus and then we more or less said you are going to spend 3 years,
4 years, whatever it is… in this beautiful campus, every once in
a while we’ll send you away And with that experiential learning
what you are really doing is building a different
model of Education you are integrating the classroom
experience with the world experience So, how to do it? We have a model at our university, we
have been doing that for 100 years where the students go on long term
internship for 6 months each called co-op, and before they go we
prepare them to understand the companies that are going to apply to Nothing is given, they have to apply
they have to succeed And yes they are paid by the company its
not a charity that the company is doing Once they are there they
have a mentor in the company and we’re in constant touch with them integrating what they are doing
as a learning experience and when they come back
the integration is fully executed Now why is this a powerful model? Let’s look at it from the point of view
of the learner when the learner understands
what she or he is good at what he or she is not good at what they
like and what they don’t like The employer also understands whether this person fits the company
and the environment at the same time
from the point of view of learning when the students come back
after an experience like that they lived it, they lived the company They lived what happens in Shanghai or
what happens in Wall Street or cape town They can question the traditional
learning that is being done When they go overseas,
when they go all over the world and incidentally our students go to
a 140 countries Doing their co-ops, and we have 3000
companies and NGOs working with us They come back transformed and they
transform us, that’s the learning So essentially it gives them the ability
to refine their knowledge question their knowledge and constantly
evolve with it that’s the beauty of experiential
learning, and by the way, at the end they are job ready, and that’s why
the companies offer them jobs even before they finish This means that we have been in tune
with what companies need or looking for because the day we don’t do that,
they don’t get the co-ops or the jobs So essentially what I said so far
is rather simple We have an AI revolution, 45% of the
jobs are going to disappear There are new jobs coming and essentially we have to get the
learners to be ready to learn for life No one it is going to be set for life. And let me move now to the second set When I started I said to you there are
2 sets of learners Those who are short on experience
long on time, undergraduate students and the learners who are long on
experience short of time Those are the people in the workplace. Machines are getting smarter and smarter No one is set for life
as I said before that means that every person
will have to retool every person will have to be
in a lifelong learning environment now that’s a major opportunity and a
major challenge for universities, why? Because the universities that we know
so far all over the world including the universities we have here including the universities in the
United States have focused essentially
in terms of learning on undergraduate learning plus research and PhDs, but we haven’t integrated
lifelong learning Yes some universities dabble with that but it’s really
a peripheral endeavor Now imagine the situation that your jobs
are going to be obsolete If your jobs are going to be obsolete
you’ll have to retool otherwise you’re not going to have jobs. And who is going to provide that? Who is going to train you in all these
new jobs that are mushrooming now? Universities have given up on that. that’s dangerous because you are
seeing more and more companies creating what, universities
in their own situation In their own myths. Now that’s our failure,
the failure of high education because this is not the core business
of companies The core business of companies is to do
what they have to do. produce value-added goods
or whatever it is so we are seeing a mushrooming
all over the world including the United States
of companies setting up internal universities, why? Because
this gap is not met by high education So, higher education
is facing a challenge we can become like the railway industry The railway
industry in the United States said, we are not in
the transportation business we are in the railway business and what did they miss?
Their line revolution The same thing may happen if we
continue things ignore lifelong learning But lifelong learning is not easily
integrated with our own model Why? Because our own model assumes that you have the learner
in a full-time situation. When people have jobs
they cannot afford to go back and spend 2 years
in universities as a matter of fact, I can tell you
in my own university which we used to train people from IBM
for instance and many other companies, you know,
I can name hundreds of companies They used to send us for 2 years
their executives They don’t want to do that anymore. Why?
Because they don’t have the time and when they send them they lose them
because they go elsewhere So what do we have to do?
If lifelong learning is with us and is needed, we have to rethink how we
provide our learning The notion of degree,
a full-time degree that will take 2 years
has to be rethought The notion of certificate
has to be introduced. I will get you to start working with me
for maybe 6 weeks to understand the beginning
of data literacy I will give you a certificate then
little by little if you want to go beyond that, you can
take another certificate and stack the second and the third
and the fourth till you reach a degree that’s an enormous change for high
education, because high education started by saying I am building a degree and then you have to come and you have
to invest 2 years with me We don’t have time to do it We in the workforce
we don’t have time to do it so lifelong learning has
to change radically. The way we think about it,
it has to be integrated in our model in high education, second
it is going to force us to think the way we do our work,
to rethink the notion of degree it also is going to force us to start
thinking about not providing our learning for people in the workforce only on campus As a matter of fact, for IBM we are
doing, we are providing the learning for them in a hybrid way
naming online, on site in India in China, in the Philippine
and in the United States. Similarly with Amazon we do that we do that with the EMC etc. So the university has to come to you,
you don’t have to come to university And I will mention the following universities are not geared
to providing this and if we don’t do it, we are going
to see more and more proliferation of second-class operations for profit operations doing that and we are going, I’m talking at least
in the United States and we are going to see a proliferation
of companies especially the large companies starting
their own universities internally. That’s our failure,
the failure of high education. So what you see in front of us is the
following picture, we are at a turning point, at a major
turning point Artificial intelligence
is destroying jobs, creating jobs. The implications for high education
are profound and we have to rethink our models. And that’s what my university,
Northeastern university has been doing we have set up a whole number of
campuses all over the United States and in Canada for professionals. We are embedded in companies but also we are here for individuals but it forced us to rethink the day we
do our business So, a robot proof education is needed and I’m going to show you now
this video about the strategic plan of our university that has been built for the next
10 years on essentially this point. Thank you very much. Please.

6 thoughts on “WGS17 Sessions: The Future Model of Higher Education”

  1. oh yes educate us and spend heeps of money of granting us scholarships to be educated in the best universities and then put us in a back office, please….#frustration

  2. U r a boring speaker. Speak to the audience who became rich selling oil… huge disconnect u have in your talk !

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *