Learn and Earn

Many students drift through college unsure of what they want to do, what jobs are available, or how to get them. Now efforts are under way to better sync up graduates’ skills with workforce needs. This series of stories relates to the problems and solutions in the area of higher education and workforce preparedness. See all our Special Reports

Conventional college route shifts to “education buffet”

Danine Adams has taken a few courses at a four-year university, some at a community college, and still more online while working all over the country as an investigator for…

Tired of waiting, employers provide just-in-time education

Arianna Suarez’s first job after emigrating from Cuba as a teenager was as a cashier at a Walmart in Hialeah, Fla.  Thanks in part to college-level classes in business administration…

In era of high costs, humanities come under attack

Oregon State University President Ed Ray flinched when a stranger confronted him to say his daughter had just graduated from the school with a degree in philosophy. “I thought, ‘Oh…

Community-college grads out-earn bachelor’s degree holders

Berevan Omer graduated on a Friday in February with an associate’s degree from Nashville State Community College and started work the following Monday in his new job as a…

Colleges take new approach to anticipating—and meeting—workforce needs

A handful of colleges think they’ve found the secret to closing the gap between the types of graduates they’re turning out and the types employers say they need. Spiders. Not…

Impatient employers step in to educate prospective workers

Cable TV installer John Hoffmeister was strapped to a utility pole 30 feet in the air when his cell phone rang with the offer of a better job. The energy…

As grads seek jobs, universities cut career services

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Courtney Flynn spends a lot of time in a bright, bustling office suite that looks like something out of the Fortune 500, gleaming with floor-to-ceiling frosted glass,…

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New pressure on colleges to disclose grads’ earnings

Joyce English was about to start studying toward an associate degree she hoped would lead to a job as a consultant to healthcare companies around Tacoma, Wash., where she lives.…

Colleges step in to fill students’ social-skills gaps

After final exams are over, MIT students will return from their holiday break to experience something different from their usual studies—but almost as important. It’s the university’s annual Charm…

Economic reality marries age-old idea — apprenticeships — with college

TACOMA, Wash. — Five-foot-two Jesica Bush exudes confidence, whether she’s scribbling notes in a 6:30 a.m. class at Bates Technical College here or wrestling 900-pound girders atop a mock…

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