President Roth on the Responsibility of Colleges to Make Students Job-Ready

Lauren RubensteinFebruary 4, 20152min

President Roth recently spoke to The Washington Post about current level of anxiety over the job-readiness of college grads, and what colleges’ roles and responsibilities really are to ensure their students are prepared for the workforce.

“The erosion of the middle class,” he said, “has put a lot more pressure on parents and students to make it big in the world or the consequences are dire.”

Roth told the Post that he believes universities can do more to prepare students for the job market “without abandoning their traditional role to provide a broad education.” He said Wesleyan is investing more in its career services.

The article goes on:

But Roth is interested in making more fundamental changes to what happens in the classroom so that students better retain what they learn on the spot, and most important, are able to translate that learning for potential employers. He wants more courses to be project-based, for example, so that students better learn to work in teams and apply their knowledge to real-world problems as they’re learning.

“It doesn’t matter what you take in college, it matters what you do,” Roth said. “You should be able to show your teachers, and then anyone else, how what you’ve made in a class, what you created, demonstrates your capacity to do other things and what you’re going to do next.”