Enhancing employability of university graduates at forefront of national forum

September 28, 2016

Vice Chancellor Professor Eeva Leinonen with Minster for Education, the Hon. Peter Collier, MLC.

Vice Chancellor Professor Eeva Leinonen with Minster for Education, the Hon. Peter Collier, MLC.

Creating globally relevant graduates will be the focus as Australia’s innovative research universities, government and industry come together for an intense two-day forum at Murdoch University.

With predictions of up to 40 per cent of jobs becoming obsolete in the next 20 years and the current generation of Australians being the first to be poorer than their parents, the Innovative Research Universities (IRU) Senior Forum will look at ways universities can ensure graduates are prepared for the ‘new economy’.

Murdoch University Vice Chancellor, Professor Eeva Leinonen said IRU leaders must understand the demands of the new economies to help shape the future of education and enhance graduate employability.

“As university leaders we face many challenges and need to increasingly translate between the language of the academic and business, and to equip our graduates for being global innovators of the future,” said Professor Leinonen.

“People are now changing jobs and careers more often than ever before because of globalisation, economic imperatives and rapid technological advancement. There is most likely no such thing as ‘a job for life’ anymore.

“In 2013, over 40 per cent of working Australians had changed their occupation in a twelve month period. This kind of environment requires a graduate who has broad-based skills, is flexible and is adaptable. And these qualities are critically important as new jobs and opportunities will emerge that don’t even exist today.”

The IRU Senior Forum features external speakers from business, start-ups and community giving their perspective about what is needed from university for future graduates. Increased casualisation of work, the need for multiple careers and periods of entrepreneurship are predicted elements of the future which graduates face.

IRU leaders will use the challenges identified to find ways to meet future graduate needs and improve businesses in the communities around IRU members, and the next generation of integrating work based learning into curriculum.

An IRU spokesperson said: “We need to ensure now that we support all those students to fulfil their potential and are ready for the changing world of work ahead. This requires universities to integrate the disruptive technologies affecting all areas of work across the world.

“The Innovative Research Universities group is a policy group positioned at the constructive centre of higher education and research policy in Australia. The IRU universities are committed to inclusive excellence in education for the communities they serve.

“Inclusive excellence is the IRU commitment to reach and serve local and global communities through an effective response for all who seek our services at the highest standards in teaching, learning and research.”

IRU comprises Murdoch University, Flinders University, La Trobe University, Griffith University, James Cook University and Charles Darwin University.

The forum runs over Wednesday 28 September and Thursday 29 September.

 

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Enhancing employability of university graduates at forefront of national forum | HigherEdFeed September 28, 2016

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