48: Integrating the Bootcamp Education Model at Duke University w/ Matthew Rascoff

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Matthew Rascoff, Associate Vice Provost at Duke University discusses why higher ed shouldn’t feel threatened by the bootcamp education model, but rather work to integrate these hands-on hard skills within our existing degree programs.

There are three competencies that should make up the future of post secondary education. Their data competencies, their technology competencies, and they are the humane competencies. You're listening to enrollment growth university from Helix Education, the best professional development podcast for higher education leaders looking to grow enrollment at their college or university. Whether you're looking for fresh enrollment growth techniques and strategies or tools and resources, you've come to the right place. Let's get into the show. Welcome back to enrollment growth university, a proud member of the connect ETU podcast network. I'm Eric Olson, AVP of marketing at Helix Education, and we're here today with Matthew Rascoff, associate vice provost that Duke University. Matthew, welcome to the show. Thank you. Great to be here. Really excited to talk with you today about higher edge consider not feeling threatened by, but truly integrating the...

...skills boot camp model within our existing operations. Before we dig into that, Matthew, can you give the listeners a little bit better background on both Duke and your role? They're sure so. Duke University is obviously a research university in the southeast. It's a really global institution. I've worked there since February of last year, but I've been a Durham resident for many years and I've observed Duke and its growth and the impact that it has in Durham, North Carolina, in the state of North Carolina, across the country and really around the world. I've had the chance to help launch a new university that we're co founding in China, starting its first undergraduate class this fall, and worked on our online strategy, digital strategy, academic technology on campus and it's been really meaningful and powerful for the past year and a half. So that's that's Duke. My team there is called the learning innovation team and our mission is...

...to bring together the tools and technologies for learning on campus with those for learning for the world were at large, and we view those as two sides of the same coin, serving learners on campus and scarning the serving learners around the world. Awesome Matthew coding business other skills. BOOT camps are often portrayed in the headlines as a potential replacement to traditional higher education. Based on everything that you've seen happen with BOOT camps over the past five years, do you believe boot camps are a legitimate threat to the undergraduate degree. I don't think they are, and and I published a piece recently in the evolution arguing that boot camps are largely complementary to four year undergraduate education. And the reason I think that is because because what we do in the four year degree is really not about getting the first job and it's really not about your first order skills.

It's a lifelong investment that you're making in foundational skills and knowledge that enables your success throughout your life. Of course, in order to be on the road to that success you need to get a first job, and that's where I see boot camps coming in, being really tied into industry needs, employer needs, and I think what the ideal solution might be for a learner today would be some Mashup of the foundational, critical thinking, communication collaboration skills that are really inherent in the four year degree. That's what we say we're about, with the technical training that's really tied to the labor market, the timely skills that you get in data science boot camp, coding boot camp, design boot camp. The PR popularity of these boot camps is obviously large. You have some coding boot camps promising and guaranteeing you're in getting eighty thousand dollar a year job after a threemonth. Boot camp will guarantee the job and the employers are...

...are standing by waiting for you graduate at a very high level. What do you think boot camps truly offer that traditional higher Ed may not always make available to students? I think they figured out how to be really responsive to current skills that are in demand in the market and to design programs that are quick turnaround for those skills. You know, in in technology, the programming languages and the skills that are in demand change so often. It's really hard when your model involves lots of committees and to two years of planning to add a new degree or add a new program's really hard to respond as quickly as the labor market might need. So that's sort of what boot camps are able to do the traditional higher at can't. They're able to switch in courses, which out courses really quickly and be really responsive and that is an advantage, but...

...it's not the be all and end all of education and I think it's that's why I think the two are complementary and the ideal combination is to have the set of timeless skills they comes from the core of the liberal arts, and the timely skills that comes from technology, data science that are really responsive to what the labor market is asking graduates to have when they come out of school. So your believe, your hope is that high red needs to do a better job incorporating the hands on skills these boot camps offer within our existing operations. Can you talk us through the three literacy strategy you believe high red needs to take more seriously? Absolutely so. This comes from a recent book from the President of Northeast Durn University, Joseph Own, and the book is called robot proof, and it's a vision for how higher education should respond to the challenges of artificial intelligence. And his view is that there are three competencies that...

...should make up the future of post secondary education. Their data competencies, their technology competencies and they're the humane competencies. And he calls the combination of all three, all three of those humanics, and the job of the educator and the educational institution is to weave those three together into this really tightly coupled bundle that help students make the connections between them and builds this kind of feedback loop between the theoretical and the apply that enhances both of them, and that's a really powerful argument for me, I think, in integrating stem and the humanities and thinking of those as branches of the same tree, as a new report from the National Academies Calls Them. I love it. I love it. And now can you talk about some of the ways that Duke specifically is trying to better incorporate these hard skills into your existing operations with your Corsara partnership? Absolutely so. Duke's been a partner. Of course, are almost from the...

...beginning. Since two thousand and twelve were one of the largest coursera partners. Millions of learners have taken our courses and it's been really successful for Duke in extending the impact of our faculty our institution to learners around the world. What we realized, though, was that there could be some tremendous value and benefits in the kinds of courses that we've offered online to the wider community on campus as well, and so what we did, through a new partnership that we call Coursera for Duke was made available all the content, which is mostly in the professional areas of technology. They to science stats, not exclusively but mostly in those areas. Made that available to our own campus community through a single sign on system. So a duke student or stapher faculty member goes to course are and as recognized as a duke user and can take any of our courses and, most importantly, earned credentials, and those credentials are recognized by the...

...labor market and and build a kind of CO curricular set of learning experiences that are tailored to their needs, that complement what they do on campus. And obviously you know, course air courses are self paced, they are fully online. We've positioned them as co curricular, ungraded and really intrinsically motivated learning experiences that students can add into their formal education and balance out the work that they're doing on campus with these really timely, labor market sensitive, in demand skills that we know employers want. So we think there's going to be a lot of value that's created through that. The CORSERA credentials are already the most widely used credentials on Linkedin's platform. They recently achieved that milestone. So you know there's clear value in those credentials in the labor market. That's demonstrated by the fact that people are using them to describe the skills that they have. We...

...wanted to make those benefits available to our community. We launched Corsera for Duke in December. Several other universities have now followed suit, which we love to see, and we've had enrollments in the four digits, which, you know, an institution with only fifteenzero students. We've been really pleased to see the the enrollments and the uptake among students, and it's gotten over really well among students as well. Some really impressive early response metrics. Matthew. You finally, can you give us any next steps advice for institutions who maybe currently see boot camps as a threat to their livelihood? Can you help talk us off the ledge a little bit? I'm not ready to say that they're not entirely Forrad I think it's sort of depends on what your institution does. I think therefer vocational for profit education. You know, if there's a boot camp that's offering a sixmonth program to do something that might have taken longer and might not have had the same results might not have had the same employment guarantee. I...

...think there is a threat. So I think the competitive picture is probably different for different kinds of institutions. It's true the community college enrollments are down. That's not true for your institutional enrollments if you look across the post secondary system in the US. So I don't think it's a blanket argument. But but what I would say is that I think it's incumbent on leaders in higher education to focus on skills, and skills should not be considered a bad word. There's something really powerful about empowering our students with a tool kits that they're going to need in order to get their first job, which will set them up for their second and third and fourth. We should not upend entirely what we do in our institutions in order to provide those skills, but we don't have to. I think we can offer them in ways that are complementary, both in courses through modular, complementary approaches, during the summers, during breaks,...

...through co curricular approaches. This is a huge opportunity for experimentation and innovation and I hope leaders in Higher Ed see it as that. See it is an opportunity more than a thread and see the the potential for building this kind of balance system which is focused on the timely and the time lists, the knowledge and the skills, the hands on and the theoretical, and the value that we add comes through the integration of those. Matthew, thanks so much for your time and your thoughts today. What's the best place for listeners to connect with you they have any follow up questions? I encourage your listeners to hang me on twitter. I'm M Z RASCOFF on twitter. I tend to be on a pretty recordly, maybe a little bit more than I should, but it's where I go to look for news and inspiration and community and ideas, and I I love engaging with folks in the community on these issues. So I'll follow you, if you follow me, and forwards engaging with your listeners.

They're awesome. Thanks against so much for joining us today, Matthew. Thank you for having me. Attracting today's new post traditional learners means adopting new enrollment strategies. Helix educations, data driven enterprise wide approach to enrollment growth is uniquely helping colleges and universities thrive in this new education landscape and Helix has just published the second edition of their enrollment growth playbook with fifty percent brand new content on how institutions can solve today's most pressing enrollment growth challenges. Download it today for free at Helix educationcoms playbook. You've been listening to enrollment growth university from Helix Education. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe to the show on Itunes or your favorite podcast player. Thank you so much for listening. Until next time,.

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