There are three questions that can bridge the divide between education and industry: “Who am I?”, “What can I do?”, and “How do I prove it?” Industry has for too long relied on filtering through resumes built up like checklists that mark the gateway into desired jobs, without having a hiring system that leads to the employment of aligned and capable candidates. Education has created an assembly system of learning that leads to the checking off of those resume boxes, rather than the development of people who can clearly communicate their value to industry partners and employers. Learn to Start creates a system of portfolio and market verification that bridges the gap between education and industry. LTS participants certify in the employability skills currently demanded by industry, enabling them to be competitive as they pivot through their careers.
By asking the question, “How do I prove it?”, we are giving students the mandate to own their value and communicate it in a demonstrable way. It is asking for and giving a continued level of transparency and self-awareness from and for students. They prove who they are and what they can do to themselves, to their peers, to their community, and ultimately to the marketplace. They are compelled to build the version of themselves they want to build and exist as, and they are not afraid to iterate and evolve.
Students need time to find alignment with the values that they hold themselves to, with the industries they find passion within, and with the communities they want to solve for. They need the time to answer the three questions, iterate on those answers, and experience problem-solving and failure that changes their approach to these questions, all to find that type of alignment. When students move from education to industry, it should not be their first experience determining where and how they fit. If they know who they are, what they can do, and feel confident proving both, they have the skill of discernment allowing for their decisions of what work they want to complete to be more decisive.
Are you currently ready to ask yourself, “How do I prove it?”, or do you need more time?