Perspiration Before Graduation: Pre-Graduation, On-Campus Employment to Bolster Marketable Skills in Higher Education

by Christopher A. Burnett1 & Z.W. Taylor2
1,2The University of Texas at Austin, USA.



In the United States, the student debt crisis has led some to believe that institutions of higher education are not appropriately preparing graduates for the workforce. However, an under-researched aspect of employability are the work experiences that college students have while still enrolled in college. More specifically, no extant research has examined how college students who work in student affairs are prepared for the labor market, even though successful employment in student affairs requires the use of many marketable skills, such as communication, punctuality, showing respect, listening, and collaborating. From here, this chapter will provide an overview of the challenges of employability in higher education and how scholars have framed higher education as a mechanism to prepare workers for the labor market. Finally, we conclude with recommendations to increase the employability of college graduates by facilitating more meaningful, engaging opportunities for student employment, bolstering their marketable skills.

Keywords: higher education, colleges, universities, employability, marketable skills

This chapter is a part of: The Economics of Skills: Pathways to Employability (Eds. Sunil Sharma, FCS & MSS El Namaki, PhD)

© 2020, CSMFL Publications & its authors.

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