Career readiness is spurring a much-needed conversation about how students learn and why faculty need to be engaged as partners in this work with support for pedagogy that integrates career competency and learning outcomes. Integrating career readiness in the curriculum of a liberal arts college is the ultimate challenge of career readiness work. On the one hand, engaging faculty must be at the core of any change in higher education; on the other hand, there is a general misperception that career readiness does not fit into a liberal arts curriculum and is akin to vocational training. Within this context, the Career Readiness Initiative was launched over six years ago in the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota. Presenters will share why the role of a faculty director was critical to launching the college-wide effort and to integrate readiness into the curriculum. In addition, highly influential in the initial phases was a faculty-to-faculty dialogue about the moral obligation to help students understand the value of a liberal arts education. Faculty development to integrate career readiness should be grounded in research on learning and be responsive to a wide range of disciplinary goals and curricula. In our model, faculty revise or design components of an undergraduate course, working with career readiness mentors and a reflective community of practitioners, to embed student career readiness and to center reflective practice. Attendees will also have the opportunity to explore the pedagogical value of RATE™(Reflect, Articulate, Translate and Evaluate), an integrated self-assessment instrument that guides students to develop a metacognitive habit of mind, and tracks their curricular and co-curricular experiences as well as provides feedback on their development.
Following this program, you will be able to:
- Explain why faculty engagement is necessary to support learning career readiness in the undergraduate liberal arts curriculum;
- Understand the faculty perspective and develop communications strategies that support collaboration and engagement;
- Navigate barriers to faculty engagement such as academic freedom, misconceptions, institutional priorities, and reward structures; and
- Center metacognition as a shared practice and value of faculty and career services professionals.