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October 8, 2007
University Chief: America Needs a Better Connect Between Industry and Academia
HOFFMAN ESTATES, IL., October 08, 2007 – According to a survey commissioned by American InterContinental University (AIU), employers think today’s job candidates are better equipped to join the workforce and to be productive than were their counterparts from the past. The employers also have some strong opinions and educators would be wise to pay attention and take notes.
AIU commissioned the survey in order to better analyze what employers think about the education that job candidates are bringing to the table. Metro Atlanta was chosen as the survey’s site because of its explosive growth and diverse demographics. Overall, these particular employers viewed their new employees as having educations that would help them quickly contribute to the organization. There were a few surprises, though.
Dr. George Miller, Chief Executive Officer of American InterContinental University – the institution that commissioned the study – surmised that the high quality of job candidates and new employees is a result of the plethora of higher education opportunities available in the metro Atlanta area. He quickly points out that American InterContinental University itself has two campuses serving that area, as well as a robust online campus that offers a variety of degree-track educational opportunities to students who choose not to learn in the more traditional “on ground” university environment.
“One concern of mine,” Dr. Miller said, “is the ability of colleges and universities to keep pace with the ever-changing needs of industry. The American business community can change at warp speed, especially in a high-growth region. Fortunately for our students, and for the companies that employ our graduates, AIU makes use of industry advisory groups to help us keep pace with, and continuously fine tune our academic offerings to, the constantly-evolving needs of employers.”
Dr. Miller goes on to say, “It also concerns me that, while many employers indicate that they would like to see more education and training opportunities for current employees, a relatively small percentage of employers contribute financially to continuing education. This shortfall in employer funding assistance seems to be most true in relation to online learning – which is the growth area in higher education circles. This disconnect could, in the long run, lead to a downturn in the very opportunities that employers indicate they want to see for employees. To offset some of the disconnect between higher education and the world of business, I would like to see more cooperation between academia and corporate America. This might well be America’s next great challenge in a global world.”
In August of 2007, American InterContinental University commissioned an online study in metropolitan Atlanta to survey employers' satisfaction with recently hired employees. The survey was conducted among 250 employers/managers from companies ranging in size from fewer than 50 employees to more than 5,000. All respondents are involved in the hiring process for new employees. The margin for error at the 95% confidence level on a sample of 250 is plus or minus 6.2 percentage points.
Founded in 1970, American InterContinental University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award Associate, Bachelor’s, and Master’s degrees. This umbrella accreditation includes the following branch campuses of the University: AIU Los Angeles, AIU Buckhead; AIU Dunwoody; AIU South Florida; AIU London; AIU Houston; AIU Online (originating in Illinois). For more information, please visit www.aiuniv.edu.