College Students and Graduates Are Adrift--What To Do
New research shows that students can be very successful after college ... but only if they take college seriously. The data now makes it clear that students must take charge of their education through
strong study skills and time management,
a commitment to every class (even the general education classes),
and active organizational involvement to build teamwork and leadership skills.
In 2011, Richard Arun and Josipa Roksa published their ground breaking book Academically Adrift: Limited Learning on College Campuses that documented that most college students do not improve their critical thinking skills and end up unprepared for life after college.
The Arun and Roksa new book Aspiring Adults Adrift: Tentative Transitions of College Graduates details the data that far too many college graduates have not found full-time professional work and have needed to return home and rely upon their parents for money.
The authors note that weaker college students will have much greater difficulty after graduating: finding jobs, keeping jobs, progressing within a company.
Employers lament that too many college graduates lack strong writing skills, demonstrate poor critical and creative thinking skills, and perform at mediocre levels with a weak work ethic. So students end up with student debt, inadequate skills for the work place, and confusion about what to do.
This news is bleak. However there is news that is very good! Students who work hard, are informed about current events and the job market, and who select programs of study with an eye to their post-graduate lives are doing very well! These students are finding jobs, are well prepared for their work lives, and are happy about the quality of their college educations and career preparation.
And for those who have graduated and are still struggling, the examples of those who are successful are models for you, too! Take some extra classes and commit yourself to performing at the highest of levels. Volunteer in your community and develop your teamwork and leadership abilities even more. Read the news, study job market trends, and explore areas to develop new skills and credentials.
Everyone can be actively involved. So, get in the game. Stay in the game. And contribute to the forward progress of our world through what you do each day.