Last week we posted a blog entitled ‘In favour of tuition fees?’ which argued that University Tuition Fees are a good thing. Not because we especially feel that way, but because questions are often asked of us in regard to training and where the next batch of Cloud Computing specialists will come from.
This leads us to always examining the training routes, one natural discussion is about University’s investing in Cloud Computing courses and from there whether tuition fees will affect the Cloud; hence our two blog postings on tuition fees.
So, this week we look at the opposing argument. Against Tuition Fees.
It can be argued that the best Cloud workers don’t need to go to University. Indeed many of them won’t because they can’t afford it, or won’t want to pay exorbitant fees.
But this does not necessarily mean that their potential won’t be realised.
Earlier this week we heard a story of a student who was considering applying for University (Marketing degree) but was wary of saddling herself with debt, she contacted a range of Marketing Consultancies to ask if she really did need a degree in Marketing. Here is part of the response that we found interesting from one Consultancy:
In our eyes, enthusiasm, teach-ability, experience and hard work would go a long way in our agency. You would not necessarily need a degree for a job with us.
Corporations are realising that talent and a degree do not always go hand in hand, as talent cannot always afford the process of getting a degree. So what do they do if they want to work in the cloud?
Firstly, salesforce.com themselves offer a number of free training tools, such as developer accounts, wide-ranging online training, and free social collaboration tools. These are good, practical and reliable training resources and should be utilised, regardless of a person’s background or current ability.
There are also loads of online courses from salesforce.com that are free and vast amounts of material that can be downloaded at a click of a button.
Secondly, on a more well-publicised scale you partake in a Youth Training Schemes:
In the UK, a one- or two-year course of training and work experience for unemployed school leavers aged 16 and 17, from 1989 provided by employer-led Training and Enterprise Councils at local levels and renamed Youth Training.
On the basis of a government promise of training places for all school leavers without jobs, social security cover was withdrawn. However, places have not always matched demand, leaving some school leavers in financial difficulties.
Opponents of youth training argue that it is a form of cheap forced labour, that it does not provide young people with the high-technology skills that will be needed in the future, and that it is underpaid.
Those that argue that it is a ‘form of cheap forced labour’ do not see the benefits to both Corporates and Individuals of the YTS scheme.
One organisation called ‘Landmark Training’ in London are running a similar scheme of their own. Some of their young people are even now working in the Cloud ecosystem:
In the current economic climate, with government cuts starting to bite and with youth unemployment hitting record levels, the work of Landmark Training is becoming ever more important. If we are to avoid another “lost generation”, it is essential for young people to have the opportunity to access employment. At Landmark, we work closely with employers, the community and young people to create programmes that will enable this to happen.
Through our Foundation Learning Programme and our Apprenticeships, we prepare young people for the world of work, giving them the skills that employers really want. We find work placements for all our Foundation Learners and employment opportunities for all our apprentices.
That is our mission and that is what we do very successfully.
Lord Sugar might not always give the most accurate portrayal of an Apprenticeship, but the basics are the same.
As employees, apprentices earn a wage and work alongside experienced staff to gain job-specific skills. Off the job, usually on a day-release basis, apprentices receive training to work towards nationally recognised qualifications. Anyone living in England, over 16 years-old and not in full-time education can apply.
Apprenticeships can take between one and four years to complete depending on the level of Apprenticeship, the apprentices’ ability and the industry sector.
Apprenticeships are open to all age groups above 16years-old whether you are just leaving school, have been working for years or are seeking to start a new career. You just need to be living in England and not taking part in full-time education.
There you have it. You don’t have to get into debt to get a career. In fact, in some instances you can be educated and get paid for it.
Increasing Tuition fees may not be the best idea, but this does not mean that Cloud Computing skills will suffer. Rather that alterative paths to employment will be sought and employers will need to adapt to not seeing as many degrees on the CV’s that land on their desks, but might have equally acceptable skills, taught and learnt away from a traditional educational establishment.
Please note that this blog post does not necessarily express the views of Resource on Demand or their team.