The pandemic is accelerating changes to post-secondary education. Virtual, flexible, and experiential opportunities remain crucial priorities for lifelong learning. The Regional Sounding Tour examined the promise and challenges of delivering on these strategies.
Virtual learning options led to increased participation in post-secondary education across Canada. Participation in virtual learning can grow further if we expand access to broadband Internet and digital technology.
Leaders agree that our economy depends on a continuous learning mindset—workers must update or learn new competencies as skill demands shift. Flexible learning options, including micro-credentialling and upskilling initiatives, may help those already in the workforce learn new skills and advance or transition in their careers.
Providing experiential learning opportunities for students through collaboration between industry and post-secondary institutions (PSIs) will be key to addressing labour shortages during and after Canada’s economic recovery.
Experiential learning, such as work-integrated learning, is not always an equal playing field. For example, unpaid internships present a barrier to students from low-income families, and many government-funded opportunities are not open to international students. Such internships are often a barrier for all but the most privileged students.