Election Season 2012: What’s Next for Higher Education?
By David Gliddon, Ph.D., adjunct professor of Business
Higher education has been a great point of debate throughout this presidential election season. Much can be learned from the platforms of both President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney and their collective approach to ensuring that Americans have high quality and accessible means to personal and professional development. The American higher education system is already one of our country’s most valuable resources. Its strength lies in its ability to produce innovations that support a stronger economy. The growth and development of our higher education system can help to create a more successful future for America.
In order to strengthen the higher education system, there are a few points to consider.
A Path to Job Growth
First, by focusing on new ideas and research, higher education can act as an incubator to help produce American jobs. Innovation leads to new development ventures and ultimately an increase in job growth to support and bring them to market. In order for this to be accomplished, the higher education system needs to be more accessible to prospective students to obtain the necessary skills.
A More Qualified Workforce
Enriching the learning experiences of students, developing critical thinking abilities, research skills, as well as providing inspiration for learning may help to support student achievement and enable high-performing graduates. Higher education provides significant value to the life of a student. By encouraging more students to enroll and providing paths to affordable education, the American workforce will be better prepared to establish and maintain the jobs of the future.
Each candidate has presented their respective plans to support the strengthening of higher education. Each plan provides a pathway to American success. As citizens reflect on the effects of each plan on the future of higher education, it is important to consider how these plans, in addition to other alternatives could be combined to create a higher education system that will be stronger and more accessible to Americans. The higher education system provides a unique opportunity for American growth. Students, faculty members, and administrators can help to support this growth by encouraging and continuing the discussion about the future of higher education.
Which candidate do you feel has the best plan to strengthen higher education in our country?
Image credit: The Washington Post/ Nikki Kahn
David Gliddon, Ph.D., is an adjunct faculty member at Colorado Technical University and a member of The White House Community Leaders Program. He has global consulting experience in human resources and education. He has won awards for both academic service and for his research on innovation leaders. He was a reviewer for SAGE publications. His research is listed as suggested reading by the National Council on Teacher Quality and the Federal Consulting Group.