For several years Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, and others have been talking about the importance of math and science proficiency. With the recent downturn and many highly educated people out of work, it has become more apparent why these visionaries have been pushing us in this direction.
In the tough economic environment, as Kathleen Parker suggests in her article, What if a college education no longer pays, it is no longer enough to have a liberal arts degree and an MBA. Instead employers are searching for individuals with broad backgrounds.
It is cheaper to hire one person who can easily move from technical subjects to marketing to cultural interface issues and then on to accounting than it is to hire four or five people who each have a narrow focus. So it is not that education no longer pays, it is that the competition for jobs has increased. Employers expect a higher, broader skill level from each employee.
As a result, parents should think carefully about what their children are learning in primary and secondary school and about the breadth of extra-curricular activities they choose. In addition, college students should think carefully about what they study and about internships and other opportunities that may help them secure a job on graduation.
Change is tough, but with the current economic environment it is imperative. Make sure your kids have opportunities. Think ahead and make sure your child gets the best, broadest education possible.