The Tale of Proprietary Schools


From the past.


Modern today classroom

How many times have you heard the story of an inventor, entrepreneur, outstanding athlete or a success story when the majority of the people around them did not support their efforts or ideas. Surprisingly these individuals met with great success. What set them apart to not give up on their dream? A dream without a plan is only a wish! History has shown us the dream of these successful people produced their plan to succeed. Proprietary schools started in the same fashion when colleges and universities were not educating people in the skilled areas the businesses were seeking. This gap gave us our first accountants, executive secretaries, medical secretaries, paralegals, and service oriented career possibilities. New innovations that came upon us in the workforce throughout the years again created more opportunity but there was no one filling the skill gaps. Again, proprietary schools stepped up to implement information technology education.

When irritating people or circumstances come our way, we can react in one of four ways. First, we can look heavenward and shout, “Why me?” I always wondered about that question. Is there someone else you would rather wish this on? Secondly, we can deny the irritation is there. Many live along the banks of the river Denial. Thirdly, we can wax macho and declare, “I ain’t gonna let this bother me! I can take it.” Finally, we can learn a lesson from the oyster and produce attitudes and actions that can turn an irritation into a pearl. 

By: Steve Sabol

When I first began my journey into proprietary school services I found a marvelous group of people primarily dedicated to filling the skill gaps of America. There was a constant awareness of what their communities needed for entry level job seekers. When opportunities would arise proprietary school leadership answered the call faster by working directly with employers through employer advisory groups. New programs were developed to be targeted to supply and demand of the communities they served. Our question today is “Did we lose sight of this process worked for proprietary schools and community”?

America is still abundant with opportunity. So many jobs are going to be needed in the workforce where we don’t yet have categories for some of these jobs. Our consumers are buying products that have very little trained support to maintain. Technology commands the desperate need for people to fill jobs that will and do exist because of internet and wifi created inventions our consumer uses everyday. Our lives are affected by construction of smart homes, smart office buildings, webcast, social media use, Alexa, Google Home, Facebook, security, medical devices and the list can go on and on. Our attitude is to not be different than it ever was in the past. Our search is to be there with the best quality training in the abundance of opportunity all around us.

During the past year my days have been somewhat devoted to a recovery of this apparent gap of skilled workers through the service of our proprietary schools. While looking at the necessary paradigm changes all aspects of our content, delivery, goals, curriculum and methods need to be adjusted to today’s needs.

OPPORTUNITY

Some things never change in our profession of developing opportunity for students. Proprietary Schools across the country have always had leadership that was looking for the best programs that would enhance opportunity and potential for students to succeed in the American workforce. Providing the best programs that do that very thing are constantly moving targets. When looking at many generations of program development we can see some of the best programs are no longer viable and our delivery systems of teaching methods have changed. During my years as an Executive Director for a for profit school I was always looking for the programs that made the best sense to offer our community. Leadership who understood the expertise to provide programs which made the best sense to economy, career services and employment opportunities found their schools thriving with students searching for this outcome in their lives.

Many of us in the post-secondary education territory have continued to adjust the strategic plan in our schools. Any great leader understands the variables that have affects on a school. Research is constantly required to understand the up and coming demands and needs of our schools. If you can read the behaviors of the economy, industry demands, technology, and population genders shifts will demand from you the decisions to make the appropriate flexibility to provide the right programs.

The pendulum is once again swinging. In the 1980’s and 90’s we saw the two year institutions growing with a need for short term programs with certifications and associate degrees. These times accounted for the growth in business colleges and technology schools. As the 21st century approached schools began to be aware of the need for higher level degrees for employment with higher salaries and job openings. Schools were being encouraged to offer higher degrees and allow students to continue in their two year institutions to finish the next level degrees by providing a 2+2 programs.

In 2019, we are experiencing a new era of demands on our schools. Our society is experiencing a huge gap and lack of skilled workers in the trades in America. Schools who had prepared for the 21st century are finding themselves in need of reassessing the programs they need to provide opportunities for their up coming students. Many two year programs today offer better salary opportunities and job placement. The education business is no different than any others offering services to society. It is important to understand the societal changes which affect school operations.

The pendulum appears now to be swinging back to fill the needs of employers. This means some schools will need to re-engineer their school programs with both type of programs and program length. It has been my fortune to observe and be part of these school changes to meet the needs of the student enrollments over the years of change. What the school industry is facing is the latest report in 2018 with the U.S. Department of Education and National Education Center of Statistics presented a problem facing post-secondary schools. Problems reported were:

Prohibitive cost increase in education. (accounted for 22,432-dollar increase)

7 million unfilled positions in America

More than half of these positions are not be trained for in our colleges.

The solution is for our schools to need to have a better understanding of :

Opportunity Offered in Your School

Some things never change in our profession of developing opportunity for students. Schools across the country have always had leadership that was looking for the best programs that would enhance opportunity and potential for students to succeed in the American workforce. Providing the best programs that do that very thing are constantly moving targets. When looking at many generations of program development we can see some of the best programs are no longer viable and our delivery systems of teaching methods have changed. During my years as an Executive Director for a for profit school I was always looking for the programs that made the best sense to offer our community. Leadership who understood the expertise to provide programs which made the best sense to economy, career services and employment opportunities found their schools thriving with students searching for this outcome in their lives. 

Many of us in the post-secondary education territory have continued to adjust the strategic plan in our schools. Any great leader understands the variables that have affects on a school. Research is constantly required to understand the up and coming demands and needs of our schools. If you can read the behaviors of the economy, industry demands, technology, and population genders shifts will demand from you the decisions to make the appropriate flexibility to provide the right programs. 

The pendulum is once again swinging. In the 1980’s and 90’s we saw the two year institutions growing with a need for short term programs with certifications and associate degrees. These times accounted for the growth in business colleges and technology schools. As the 21st century approached schools began to be aware of the need for higher level degrees for employment with higher salaries and job openings. Schools were being encouraged to offer higher degrees and allow students to continue in their two year institutions to finish the next level degrees by providing a 2+2 programs. 

In 2019, we are experiencing a new era of demands on our schools. Our society is experiencing a huge gap and lack of skilled workers in the trades in America. Schools who had prepared for the 21st century are finding themselves in need of reassessing the programs they need to provide opportunities for their up coming students. Many two year programs today offer better salary opportunities and job placement. The education business is no different than any others offering services to society. It is important to understand the societal changes which affect school operations. 

The pendulum appears now to be swinging back to fill the needs of employers. This means some schools will need to re-engineer their school programs with both type of programs and program length. It has been my fortune to observe and be part of these school changes to meet the needs of the student enrollments over the years of change. What the school industry is facing is the latest report in 2018 with the U.S. Department of Education and National Education Center of Statistics presented a problem facing post-secondary schools. Problems reported were:

Prohibitive cost increase in education. (accounted for 22,432-dollar increase)

7 million unfilled positions in America

More than half of these positions are not be trained for in our colleges.

The solution is for our schools to have a better understanding of :

Affordable skills-training programs that equip workers to:•Join the workforce in higher paying jobs 

•Have certifications that show competence. No guessing for employers 

•Improve their skills so they can take higher-paying jobs •

Partnerships

•Educational institutions and businesses must work together to create guided pathways to quality jobs for those seeking a non-traditional education

•Offers employers the opportunity to upgrade their workforce 

Over the past year I have teamed up with Quantum Educational Services to begin a turn key project to address these problems. It was evident focus had to be on the distinct markets that were in need of the absent skills and employees to fill these positions. Three distinct markets were identified for the development of the project identified as Next Step. Next Step will address distinct needs in the markets of under employed college credits, high school graduates not interested in pursuing a traditional college education and employers in need of skilled employees. 

The strategy had to assure quality by working with proven. known. and respected career focused training providers that lead to certifications. Programs need to match content and curriculum with the workplace skills. Program timelines need to be shortened for employment opportunities. Next Step will work with institutions to bring new programs to the market faster.

Understanding the need for change in program offerings for startup programs have been developed by Next Step to address supply and demand by: 

  • allowing schools to have no up-front costs for implementation. 
  • Assist schools with the new programsto develop linkage with employers looking to fill skills gaps. 
  • Letting schools offer programs that would help with the compliance of the 90/10 rule
  • Schools would have the assurances to have a team supporting the school with extensive experience
  • All programs provide outcomes with employer recognized certifications. 
  • Standardized Content
  • Potential to reduce instructional cost
  • Programs will not be sold to competing schoolslocated within a 25-mile radius.

Program Offerings Currently Available 

  • IoT (Internet of Things) for the house
  • Cybersecurity
  • Information Technology Support
  • Network Administration
  • IT Project Management
  • Electric Systems Project Management
  • Nutrition and Wellness

Coming Soon

  • Robotics
  • Manufacturing Automation
  • Medical Information
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Technology
  • Exercise and Nutrition for Seniors
  • EMT

Program Delivery 

  • Courses and labs are available online but can also be integrated into a face to face format 
  • The recommended delivery method for previous college graduates is either online or in a bended environment
  • The recommended delivery for high school graduates is either residential or in a blended environment. 
  • Online asynchronous and self-paced with the facilitator/instructorRegardless of modality, students will be enrolled into their courses by QES once payment for the course has been received from the participating school.

Student Benefits

  • Curriculum designed to address the specific requirements of industry certification exams.
  • Programs that are focused, affordable, and short in durationAccess to vendor employment and career development resources
  • Ability to-do 1+1+2 Diplomas, to Associate Degree leading to Bachelor . Short entry point makes commitment easier but allows student to upgrade skills with a full transition to the next advanced skill levels.

Next Step Jobs and Salaries Potential

Sources: http:// glassdoor.com and http://payscale.com

Industry Partners with Next Step

ESPA 
CompTIA
Precision Nutrition 
BEDROCK Learning


Possible Certifications Examples

  • IoT (Internet of Things) for the Home
  • Comp TIA IT Fundamentals
  • CompTIA A+
  • ESPA C-EST Certification
  • Cybersecurity
  • Comp TIA IT Fundamentals 
  • CompTIA A+
  • CompTIA Network
  • Security
  • CYSA+

Next Step Guides Schools with Turn Key Services

Product knowledge training is available for schools for admissions marketing teams and academic teams via webinars. Separate webinars would be offered for the career service team. Ongoing webinars will be available to schools for new employees for product knowledge.

Additional Services 

  • Curriculum Development
  • Distance Learning specialist
  • Faculty Professional Development
  • Performance Management
  • Financial Aid Specialist
  • Career Services Mentorship
  • Compliance / Regulatory Advisory
  • Student Retention

Next Step is a compilation of years of experience and research of the current best practices for today’s student candidates. The career school movement is in the role of producing opportunity for student graduates with a documented outcome skill verified by certification or skill measurement. We started with the issues facing career schools and our devotion is to serve career schools and their students. 

To learn more about how this can work for your career school or community college contact Next Step at: https://quantumeducationalservices.com

Dr. Gary R. Carlson


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