This school gets it – again August 19, 2006Posted by Tom in Community, Economic Development, Education, Technology, Workforce.
Steven Infanti, Communications Director at the Harrisburg University of Science and Technology offers a smart op-ed regarding the role of education (and, presumably, workforce) in economic development. (You may recall, I profiled this brand new higher education institution in an earlier Convergence entry.) This is a great piece, one that I don’t want to lose into the Internet ether, so I’ll reprint it in its entirety:
Susan Gvozdas’ article (“High-tech workers gain an edge,” July 30) is further evidence that our state’s competitiveness is linked firmly to our ability to develop and educate the most competent and adaptable workforce.
Employers in the region are participants in a global economy that values college graduates that bring a combination of specialized technical aptitudes, adaptability, and business skills to the workforce. As the only four-year comprehensive university in the city focused on the production of technology-educated graduates, we see first-hand the advantage those students receive by majoring in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics — known as the STEM disciplines — when they begin their careers.
There’s a clear link between education and economic development. By offering innovative science and technology degree programs developed with a changing business world in mind so students can start careers before they graduate, future graduates can move into “gold collar” careers.
Doing so, however, requires a learning environment that combines technology with communication, teamwork and practical application. That’s why members of regional industry are playing a role by developing our course curriculum and participating as corporate faculty and program advisory team members. In addition, we link every student with a business mentor upon enrollment and have a mandatory multi-year internship program.
In the near future, Harrisburg University’s SciTech Innovation Center will foster regional entrepreneurial ventures, as well as attract new technology companies to the region.
This piece makes so much sense on so many levels. I will not be surprised by the success of Harrisburg University, its SciTech Center nor its graduates. If they are practicing what they preach, they are building an impressive foundation for the future. There’s a lot to admire at this institution, and probably a lot to emulate.