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Work-Ready Skills and Less Debt: A Proven Employer Model for Students

Jaime Nunez (Education At Work), Edmundo Hidalgo (Arizona State University), Tara Shepard (Education At Work), Peter Mallot (Microsoft), and Aman Kidwai (Insider) discuss Work-Ready Skills and Less Debt: A Proven Employer Model for Students at the 2021 ASU+GSV Summit.Looking back on their education, what do learners say matters most? Did their education help them to achieve their goals and to develop the skills they needed to be successful in future endeavors? How can employers step in and help meet learner needs in collaboration with institutions? Creative and innovative workforce solutions that not only benefit employers, but universities and, most importantly, students exist. In this session learn how employers and universities are developing innovative models to help students gain career-relevant work experience -- providing a launchpad for better talent pipelines and helping students to graduate with less student loan debt, have higher proficiency in career readiness domains, be more likely to be working full-time, and have significantly better outcomes in the long-term than their counterparts. Background: Strada conducted an evaluation to measure the extent to which Education at Work alumni are better prepared for jobs and their lives post-graduation. EAW alumni were compared against both regional student samples and national student samples. This evaluation determined that EAW alumni: Graduate with less student loan debt ($19K vs. $34K) Have higher proficiency in career readiness domains (digital skills: 77% vs. 68%) Have higher satisfaction and confidence exploring career paths (94% vs. 85%) Are more likely to be working full-time, not seeking employment (80% vs. 70%) With longer EAW tenure, have significantly better outcomes (91% of EAW alumni say their work is meaningful vs. 73% of the sample

ASU+GSV 2021