PHILADELPHIA — The University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education hosted Preparing Today’s Students for Tomorrow’s Jobs in Metropolitan America: The Policy, Practice and Research Issues,” May 25-26 in Houston Hall, 3733 Spruce St.
Organized by Laura Perna, a professor in Penn GSE, and Susan Wachter, a professor in Penn’s Wharton School, “Preparing Today’s Students for Tomorrow’s Jobs” explored the most effective institutional and public-policy strategies to be sure high school and college students and adult learners have the knowledge and skills required for future employment.
“The conference addresses such critical questions as: How do we define success with regard to the role of education in preparing students for work?” Perna said. “How well are different educational providers preparing future workers? What is the role of public policy in improving connections between education and work?
“It seeks to improve our understanding of several fundamental dimensions of this issue through insights from federal, state and local policy leaders, college administrators and researchers.”
Guest speakers included Eduardo Ochoa, assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Education; former Pennsylvania Gov. Edward Rendell; Lori Shorr, chief education officer to Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter; Charles Kolb from the Committee for Economic Development in Washington, D.C.; Claudia Neuhauser from the University of Minnesota; Bethany Krom from the Mayo Clinic; and Harry Holzer from Georgetown University.
“Much recent attention focuses on the need to improve high school graduation and college degree completion. But, relatively less attention has focused on whether graduates and degree recipients have the skills and education required by employers,” Perna said.
The event was sponsored by the Penn’s Pre-Doctoral Training Program in Interdisciplinary Methods for Field-Based Research in Education, with funding from the U.S. Department of Education’s Institute for Education Sciences in collaboration with Penn’s Institute for Urban Research.