There is an employee skill gap and higher education isn’t doing enough to bridge it, according to the third Innovation Imperative Poll conducted by Northeastern University. The survey found that 73% of the business leaders who responded believe employees in the United States don’t have all the skills they require, while 87% think most college graduates lack the important skills needed to succeed.
Nationally, 54% of the business leaders said they think the U.S. higher education system lags behind both developed and emerging nations in preparing students for the workforce. Over the next 10-15 years, 27% of the leaders said they believe college graduates will be better prepared to join the workforce, 32% predicted they will be less prepared, and 39% said they will be equally prepared.
Nearly all of the leaders (97%) said colleges and universities in the U.S. must expand opportunities for experiential learning and teach about entrepreneurship (89%).
“These findings underscore a critical call to action for all of us in higher education to innovate,” said Joseph E. Aoun, president of Northeastern. “Business leaders, who are key partners for colleges and universities, want higher education to be more experiential and want us to instill entrepreneurial qualities in our graduates.”