U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation
Report: Bridging the Soft Skills Gap
BRIDGING THE SOFT SKILLS GAP
How the Business and Education Sectors Are Partnering to Prepare Students for the 21st Century Workforce
Despite U.S. high school graduation rates reaching all-time highs, many employers are finding that recent graduates are unprepared to succeed in the workforce because they lack foundational “soft skills.” While technical skills are often industry-specific, soft skills such as professional communication, critical thinking, collaboration, and time management are valued by employers across sectors. The importance of these skills is widely acknowledged; yet, they are not taught with consistency or given prioritization. Closing the gap between the soft skills employers require in their workforce and those that students leave school with is essential. This can and should be achieved through collaboration between business and education at the local level. Bridging the Soft Skills Gap makes the case for partnerships between the business and education sectors and outlines strategies already being used successfully across the country. It offers practical recommendations for businesses seeking to make an impact and profiles five successful partnerships established by Nike, EY, Wegmans, Wynn Las Vegas and the Northern Kentucky Education Council.
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