Saturday, 15 February 2014: 1:30 PM-4:30 PM
Comiskey (Hyatt Regency Chicago)Pressures on postsecondary education from outside and within are complex and hard to manage. They require that we rethink what it means to be educated in today’s world and explore ways to provide coherent, meaningful educational experiences in the face of the current turbulence, uncertainty, and fragmentation in higher education. Challenges include changing patterns of participation, tensions between administrators and faculty who are responding differently to the current social and economic reshaping of higher education, the perceived reluctance of colleges to adapt to changing expectations and manage costs, and the demands by policymakers and employers that are driven by the changing nature of the workplace, time to degree, and completion rates. Through presentations and group discussions, this session will explore key questions that must be addressed to provide clearer pathways for students who wish to pursue science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) careers and for all students who need to understand how STEM can inform their role as citizens: How can perspectives of educators, students, employers, and policymakers be better aligned to create clarity about what to expect of college graduates? How can learning goals and expectations for workplace success help shape—at federal, state, and institutional levels—educational and public policies that address both the preparation of a well-educated citizenry and more STEM professionals?
Judith A. Ramaley, Portland State University
Catherine Middlecamp, University of Wisconsin
Jay B. Labov, U.S. National Academy of Sciences