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June 27, 2018
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Higher Education & Employability: The Series ...
New Creds 
Welcome back to our series on the recommendations of NEBHE's Commission on Higher Education & Employability and its report Learning for Life and Work.

Photo by Carlos Quiapo on Unsplash
This week, we pick up with the Commission's recommendations on
"Emerging Credentials and Credentialing Systems."
The traditional "currency" of higher education institutions--credit hours, programs and degrees--exist in a large and growing marketplace of institutional and non-institutional providers delivering new types of credentials (certificates, licenses, badges or other non-degree credentials). This dynamic landscape reflects the potential value of credentials in the marketplace and the growing demand for lifelong, just-in-time learning, quality credentials and new credential systems to keep pace with changing industries, skill requirements and professions. While the U.S. is home to more than 4,000 personnel-certification bodies, less than 10% of them are accredited or reviewed by a third party. The Commission examined important efforts to bring structure, transparency, clarity and validations of quality to this environment.
The pertinent recommendations (as numbered in the Learning for Life and W ork report):
­­­ 16. The New England states should collaborate to support the build-out of Credential Engine's Credential Registry. A regional and collaborative approach to this should address high-value credentials that are important to our shared economy and economic needs.
17. The New England states should identify in-demand, high-quality, growth-oriented credentials in sectors that are critical to the innovation, competitiveness and growth prospects for high-wage jobs in multiple New England states. This s hould include developing pathways linking such credentials to further postsecondary study options and employment opportunities--demonstrating opportunities for mobility between jobs, industries and complementary credentials.
18. Institutions should continue to innovate in developing "out of the box" credentials that respond to the dynamic, changing needs of individuals and employers. Fu rther, policymakers and accreditors should support structures, policies and proce sses that are responsible, innovative, and enable the development of workplace-relevant credentials and certifications, providing incentives, regulatory flexibility, and updated higher education policies informed by employer involvement.
Among stakeholder actions, the Commission calls on employers to work with postsecondary institutions to award student's micro-credentials or industry certifications. It calls on higher education institutions to use employer partnerships to evaluate what credentials can be integrated in academic coursework to enhance graduates' employability and hold employers accountable for recognizing them. Policymakers, meanwhile, should document the landscape of growth-oriented occupations that offer living wages and work with employer and higher ed partners to bring awareness of pathways to in-demand credentials. 
Watch NEJHE NewsBlast and www.nebhe.org for more ways to help lead in learning for life and work.  


Check out our newest commentary and analysis from New England's higher education leaders

NEBHE's  Commission on Higher Education & Employability has thought hard over the past year about the increasing role of artificial intelligence and robotics in the future of life and work. Many others are also waking up to this landscape, which not so long ago seemed like science fiction. Waltham, Mass.-based MindEdge Learning, for example, plans to devote regular blog posts to ethical questions in a world in which humans coexist with sophisticated--even humanoid--robots. The first blog post by Jennifer Ware, a MindEdge editor who teaches philosophy at City University of New York, begins by asking: What happens when robots do immoral things?

As school systems strive to implement mandated standards to help students excel in standardized testing and gain necessary skills for future job opportunities, many creative school programs such as art and music are deemed unnecessary and cut from the curriculum. Jenny Silverstone, author of a research-driven parenting blog called Mom Loves Best explains a few of the powerful ways programs such as music education can have major positive impacts on growth and development. "Music education requires students to recognize and repeat pitch, tone or enunciation of words," writes Silverstone. Another benefit of music education, she notes, is the increased ability to process situations and find solutions mentally. Those with musical training have been found to have higher levels of grey matter volume in their brains, which are directly tied to auditory processing and comprehension. Surprisingly, one of the areas of life this is most important for is forming relationships. Musicians learn to listen to others, sense emotion, and react with greater depth and understanding.  
News Around NEBHEnews

See what our other programs are up to at nebhe.org
Massachusetts Approved for SARA
NEBHE approved the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for participation in SARA on June 7. Massachusetts becomes the 49th state nationally to join SARA and the final New England state to join SARA through NEBHE. SARA is an initiative that will make distance-education courses more accessible to students across state lines and make it easier for states to regulate and institutions to participate in interstate distance education. The Massachusetts Department of Higher Education will begin accepting institutional applications to join SARA on June 18, 2018. Visit www.mass.edu/sara for the latest information and updates regarding SARA membership application and procedure.  

Save on Technology!
NEBHE has joined the Midwestern Higher Education Commission's MHECTECH program, allowing significant savings on tech purchasing by public and nonprofit colleges, K-12 districts and schools, cities, counties, towns and state governments in New England. For more, please view MHEC's contract listing here or contact NEBHE CFO Genevieve Davis at gdavis@nebhe.org.   

Reports & Analysis from NEBHE's Policy & Research Team
Newslink newslink

NEBHE has published an annual directory of New England colleges and universities for a half-century as a special issue of its New England Journal of Higher Education. In 2011, NEBHE formed a partnership with Boston magazine to jointly publish the Guide based on a NEBHE survey of campuses.

NEBHE's 2018 Guide to New England Colleges & Universities lists key data for public and independent, degree-granting colleges and universities based in New England, such as: admissions application deadlines and acceptance rates; faculty-student ratio; enrollment totals and breakdowns for part-time, commuting, female, international and minority students; cost of attendance; and degrees offered.
roadsign work ahead

View constantly updated higher education job listings at Joblink, NEBHE's collaboration with New England HERC.
NEJHE NewsBlast  is a summary of NEJHE  content and other news around NEBHE prepared weekly by NEJHE  Executive Editor John O. Harney  and emailed every Wednesday to opinion leaders and practitioners. When responding to NEJHE content, please make sure that your remarks are relevant, courteous and engaging. Individuals are responsible for their comments, which do not represent the opinions of the New England Board of Higher Education. We urge commenters to briefly note their occupational or other interest in the topic at hand. Please refrain from offensive language, personal attacks and distasteful comments or they may be deleted. Comments may not appear immediately. Thank you for staying engaged. Join Our Mailing List!