Wednesday, April 09, 2008

At the Round Table

Yesterday I was honored to be a Speed Leader.

"A what?" you say.

The Rotaract Club (Rotary at the college level) of The University of Findlay, had an event where students could sit at a round table with a business leader. They could ask questions of the business person for 15 minutes and then each leader would move on to another table to repeat the routine with another group of students.

Before I would answer questions at each table, I asked each student to tell me their major or majors and what they wanted to do when they graduated.

Except for one or two, most had no idea.

That really disturbs me.

Think of all the money the students and their parents have invested in their education.

These students had not connected with those in the business community at all until yesterday's event.

In my opinion, each college should have some sort of credit program, where each student has to meet with one business person per month. The college could help by having a list of people within each academic area that are willing to be part of this project.

Why would business people want to do this? Well, some would just want to give back to the community, but others would like the opportunity to connect with good interns or employees for the future. It would give students a window into the real world of business. It might give them a clearer picture of how to begin to use that expensive education.

For those students just weeks away from graduation, who have no idea of a direction, I am just sad. Sad that they are not getting a complete education, one that gives them education and ALSO lessons in relationship development.

What do you think about all this?


Jacki Hollywood Brown said...

I think university should all year round and be a 5 year program with work terms in "the industry" every other semester.

Some people go through the education program thinking they want to be teachers but find they can't handle the classroom setting for weeks on end. Some think they want to be in the marketing department and the don't understand the aspects of graphic (web) design.

Perhaps if they had to work in their chosen fields, they would choose another field.

Sandy of Sandy's Stuff for Women said...

I personally think it's a lot to expect a young person to know by the age of 21 or 22 what she wants to do for the rest of her life.

Our oldest son graduated with a double major from Ohio State. He is COO of a German manufacturing firm. Although he admits he wouldn't have his job if he didn't have the education he does, he doesn't feel like he uses much of it.

Our other son was so 'lost' when he went to college that he flitted from program to program and school to school, none of which were able to help him focus and choose a career path. Perhaps your idea would have helped him.

Louise Kahle said...

I think that many people are too young for college. My husband attended college after he retired from the Navy when he was 42. At that age, and with that much "life" under his belt, he knew who he was and where he wanted to go.