ERIC Identifier: ED446724
Publication Date: 2000-00-00
Author: Cantor, Jeffery A.
Source: George Washington Univ. Washington DC. Graduate School of Education and Human Development., ERIC Clearinghouse on Higher Education Washington DC.
Higher Education outside of the Academy. ERIC Digest.
In an era when business recognizes that its human resources are the single most important ingredient for corporate success, training has become an invaluable enterprise. American industry recognizes that the skills of workers at all levels will continue to need to improve in response to rapid technological changes. At the same time, what has come to be recognized as the classic model of the university is changing as a result of industry's new and emerging needs for knowledge, constant technological innovation, education's place in the economy, and diminishing funding (Skilbeck & Connell, 1996). This report addresses joint initiatives and programs from higher education and business and industry from outside the academy.
HOW HAVE TRAINING AND HUMAN RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT FOR BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY GROWN AS A FORM OF HIGHER EDUCATION?
The growth of higher education outside the academy has involved and affected three entities: the college or university itself, the corporate or business community, and the community at large. This report looks at each entity and its relationship with the other two. Six distinct but interrelated activities underpin this movement:
1. The growth of training and human resource development as delivered by a firm for its employees and customers as a form of higher education.
2. The growth of the corporate university training and human resource development delivered by a company for its employees and customers, often in cooperation and partnership with colleges and universities.
3. Colleges' and universities' use of computer-based technologies to deliver instruction to their students.
4. College-developed training delivered on site to local businesses and industries.
5. The growth and proliferation of private and for-profit institutions of higher education.
6. An increasing presence of nontraditional nonprofit community-based organizations providing education and training in competition with traditional institutions of higher education.
Both education and training have a role to play in meeting the mission and objectives of 21st century colleges and universities.
HOW HAVE PRIVATE AND NONTRADITIONAL INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION GROWN?
In addition to the plethora of businesses that provide training for their employees, the 1990s witnessed a growth in the number of private and proprietary and nonprofit institutions offering college-level education to a growing number of nontraditional students (McCandless, 1998). Hence, these institutions have identified significant niche markets as a result of college students' changing demographics and demands. The traditional university is no longer without competition for a student body. A host of learning organizations, including museums, profit-making organizations, and publishers, and the new technology have converged to bring about a global learning community offering students a plethora of international educational opportunities.
HOW HAVE COLLEGES DEVELOPED AND DELIVERED TRAINING TO LOCAL BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY AS A SOURCE OF ADDITIONAL REVENUE?
The search for alternative sources of funding for the academy has caused both administrators and faculty to rethink their relationships with their corporate neighbors (Aronowitz, 1998). Higher education's response has taken two predominant forms to the challenges of external study. One is through partnerships with business and industry to provide contract training to meet specific needs of the workplace. The second is through the development of mechanisms to recognize education and training provided by other organizations external to the traditional academy. This monograph looks at how colleges and business have combined to solve mutual problems of educating a citizenry and a workforce. It looks at programmatic partnerships in areas where workers are in high demand, as well as the processes and conventions that have evolved in the academy to be able to recognize industry or corporate training as part of the academic degree program.
HOW AND WHY HAS THE CONCEPT OF THE CORPORATE UNIVERSITY GROWN?
The corporate university is an institution developed by business and industry to meet businesses' changing needs created by a global economy and increased competition. At the time of Nash and Hawthorne's original work about employer-sponsored instruction (1987), about 400 firms had initiated and developed corporate universities to educate and train employees. The impetus for the corporate university was to obtain quality educational services at competitive prices to maintain a skilled workforce and to create a learning organization to compete in a global economy (Meister, 1998b).
Based on this review of the literature, a model for proactive cooperation between the academy and its external organizations and constituencies emerges. Its focus is on making decisions about when to compete with other organizations providing education and training in the community, and how to cooperate with other community-based constituents in providing education and training outside the academy.
Aronowitz, S. (1998, March/April). "The new corporate university: Higher education becomes higher training." Dollars & Sense, 216, 32-353.
McCandless, G. (1998, October). "Info technology spawns massive new training market." Community College Weekly. 6, 15.
Meister, J. (1998b). Corporate universities: Lessons in building a world-class work force. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Nash, N.S. & Hawthorne, E.M. (1987). "Formal recognition of employer-sponsored instruction." ASHE-ERIC higher education report No. 3. Washington, DC: ERIC Clearinghouse on Higher Education, The George Washington University.
Skilbeck, M. & Connell, H. (1996, February). "Industry-university partnerships in the curriculum: Trends and developments in OECD countries." Industry and Higher Education 11(1) 9-22.
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