No longer is a college education simply students taking notes in lectures, reading books, and regurgitating on exams and in term papers everything they have heard and read over the preceding weeks. Today, the focus is much more on preparing students for the “real world,” including the ability to enter the workforce as experienced practitioners in their chosen disciplines. This is true in a host of fields including the grocery industry, where advances in technology have impacted every segment of the industry. STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) is the buzzword, but the story behind the acronym is core to the future of public-private partnerships in higher education.
Today we are in the midst of one of the greatest demographic shifts in this country’s history began: the retirement of the Baby Boomers. It took 30 years – from 1980 to 2010 – for the 65+ population to grow from 28 million to 42 million, or from 11.3% to 13.0% of the country. However, by 2020 that group grows by 15 million people, to 16.1% of the population; over the next 10 years, they add an additional 17 million people and grow to 19.3% of the US population. In years 2040 and beyond, this cohort will continue to represent 20% or more of the country. Continue reading