Colleges and universities have long been considered the equalizers of opportunity and upward mobility in the US. Before the pandemic, challenges facing universities included rapidly escalating tuition, equitable recruitment and admissions policies, workplace preparedness, and doubts regarding return on student and family investment. The pandemic magnified discrepancies between the "haves" and "have nots," with impact on both traditional and nontraditional students and institutions. Nontraditional educational opportunities—e.g., online education, part-time certification programs—emerged as supplemental tools for upskilling and reskilling new and returning students. How are educators leveling the playing field to equalize educational opportunities? What is the role of the private sector in upskilling its employee base to meet the needs of tomorrow's jobs? Is it time to reimagine fundamentally how the higher education system can better meet the nation's economic, social, and workplace needs?
Contributor, The Atlantic; Author, Who Gets In and Why: A Year Inside College Admissions
President and CEO, Jobs for the Future (JFF)
CEO, WorldQuant University
President and Professor of History, Williams College
Guido Calabresi Professor of Law, Yale Law School; Author, The Meritocracy Trap: How America's Foundational Myth Feeds Inequality, Dismantles the Middle Class, and Devours the Elite
Eloy Ortiz Oakley
Chancellor, California Community Colleges