COVID-19 has disrupted the global job market on an unprecedented scale, and university graduates and young people stand to be among the hardest hit. But while the 2020 generation faces an extraordinary set of challenges, they also possess unparalleled strengths: they’re tech-savvy, self-motivated, and endlessly adaptable. All that talent shouldn’t go to waste That’s why we started Classof2020 – to give everyone a shot at the future.
First initiated by Associate Professor Dr Norbert Morawetz at Henley Business School, Classof2020 has quickly grown into a group of volunteers comprising students, graduates, educators and professionals coming together to build a free online academy for young people entering a difficult job market.
The idea is simple: We’re asking businesses of all types and sizes to share learning and development materials with Classof2020, so that we can curate them into an engaging upskilling programme:
Graduates and young people can participate in a nationally recognized programme to develop new skills, and get ready for when the economy bounces back. It gives young people structure in uncertain times, and helps them put their time to good use.
Businesses sharing with Classof2020 will reaching a large group of young people, and can draw on fresh talent as the economy reopens.
Universities, colleges and councils receive free resources to embed Classof2020 into their existing support networks, with the freedom to adapt the programme to their own needs. Students will benefit from additional validation and local accreditation of skills, as well as improved academic performance and wellbeing.
Crowdsourced curriculum - skills businesses are looking for
Classof2020 will feature everything from short courses, to live webinars, business challenges and Q&As pooled from every sector of the workforce. The guiding principle is to compile practical learning to the benefit of both students and businesses. The core curriculum could include training in such areas as:
Classof2020 will soft-launch mid June.
We will continue to develop and promote the platform throughout the year. New content and opportunities will be added on an ongoing basis so there is plenty of opportunity to engage.
We operate as a volunteer supported, community-driven project. Our team includes students, professionals, educators, academics and furloughed workers, working together from home to make the platform the best it can be. Through our education partners we also have outreach into over 150 universities and colleges in the UK.
We are working with businesses and organisations who donate learning or funds to make high quality learning content available for free.
We are also proud to have received a grant from Innovate UK, which will help us develop a novel peer accreditation mechanism over the next few months. https://www.gov.uk/government/news/40m-boost-for-cutting-edge-start-ups