We live in an age where the probability of automation radically changing most of today’s jobs is fast becoming a reality.
Futurist Thomas Frey believes that two billion jobs will disappear by 2030 which is approximately 50% of the current workforce.
Young people need to choose careers that will equip them with the critical skills that they’ll need to build the future workplace. To ensure this, studying a future focused degree is the first step.
Vega, a brand of The Independent Institute of Education (The IIE), delivers two IIE BCom degrees that equip graduates with the problem-solving skills and creative adaptability needed to be the venturesome, innovative, transformative and collaborative leaders the future requires – regardless of the industries they choose to enter.
“A future-proofed degree needs to embed both fundamental knowledge and soft skills to produce graduate thinkers and problem solvers capable of exploration and analysis – essentially we are graduating the employees that businesses will need to survive. The BCom degrees have therefore been designed to enable our graduates to develop these skills in real-world scenarios,” says Dr Carla Enslin, Brand Strategist, and co-founder of Vega.
“These real-world experiences include our industry-supported brand challenges, where we partner with businesses experiencing pressing challenges. Students apply their academic knowledge, critical thinking, and creativity to resolve these business problems – just as they would have to in the working environment – while at the same time learning complex problem solving, and the bravery to challenge the status quo,” she explains. “The future work place needs graduates who are whole-brain thinkers.”
Lindsay Day, Programme Navigator: Business Leadership at Vega explains that building on lectured content with real-world experiences as part of Vega’s purpose-built curriculum gives students the confidence they need come up with creative solutions, and then to explain and defend them as they would in the workplace.
“Balancing subjects such as accountancy, financial management and commercial law – all essential tools for building or running a successful business – with subjects like experiential marketing management, information systems strategy, and research practice, adds a depth of confidence and creativity that prepares our graduates to respond to the business contexts that they will face after graduation, and of course into the future” she says.
Students challenging one another and holding each other accountable in a real-world environment is far more constructive than studying in isolation, and this is much more representative of today and tomorrow’s workplace. In addition, the power of many voices and opinions stimulated by access to technology and mentors in the business world encourages an exponential growth in confidence, learning and key skills development.
Original and diverse thinking is being acknowledged and rewarded more now than ever before in the workplace. Exciting opportunities therefore exist for graduates who have learnt to apply themselves.
Dr Felicity Coughlan, Director of The Independent Institute of Education and Group Academic Director of ADvTECH says: “Business models such as Waze, Airbnb, Facebook, Travelstart, WhatsApp, and Uber exist because their founders were brave enough to not only think outside, but beyond the box. They created solutions to new-world problems. It’s no longer about graduates being required to solve a specific problem, but rather being able to identify opportunities that change will cause, even before they happen. This will set them apart from their peers and guarantee future employment.”
The future workplace needs more astute, agile and better-equipped sense makers. A purpose-led BCom degree will help train students with the requisite insights and skills to probe for the right answers, dissect and analyse departments and units to reveal actual brand and business challenges, and ultimately provide original, concrete solutions.
“Education in Africa must be reinforced by research into evolving industries, and continuous evaluation of new skillsets to enhance traditional offerings. Our analysis and evolution of these important degrees provides the leaders of the future the aptitude to venture into the unknown, and to create solutions for developing enterprises and brands in the informal sector. This is especially true for the so-called missing middle, which make up a substantial percentage of the local market,” says Nina de Klerk, National Head: Postgraduate Research and Alliances, Vega School.