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Kevin Bauman


Kevin Bauman is the Managing Director of Strategic Partnerships & Alliances for Penn Foster Education Group. He was appointed by the Massachusetts Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education to serve on the State’s Digital Learning Advisory Council. He is a contributing writer at EdSurge. He holds an MBA from Boston College’s Carroll School of Management.

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LearnLaunch recently held their 6th "Across Boundaries"  conference at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. Originally held in a large lecture hall at MIT (I was there!), it has grown to 1100+ participants that draws interest on a national and even international scale (this year featured an "international pitch session" with EdTech start-ups from abroad participating). A wide variety of educators, education administrators, entrepreneurs, investor, education companies and technology innovators all come together due to the shared interest in driving innovation to transform learning and increase achievement using digital technologies.
Our nation's workforce development efforts, including initiatives by government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and corporations, are at a pivotal moment of transition due to the realities of living in the globally connected Information Age. It's up to us to begin laying the groundwork now for a reimagined workforce development system.  Workforce development isn't exactly system, it's a collection of mostly independent organizations making well-meaning efforts to serve the workforce needs in their local communities.
Last week I had the pleasure of attending the CAEL (Council for Adult and Experiential Learning) International conference in Chicago. This year's theme was "Partners in Progress: Unite to Educate America's Workforce," and the sessions examined partnerships among universities and colleges, corporations, government, non-profit organizations, and workforce developers. This year's theme was timely as it took place against the backdrop of the results from the Presidential election.      
Your hourly employees are the face of your quick-serve restaurant- responsible for the day-to-day interactions between your customers and your business. These positions are often plagued with high turnover rates and unfortunately, sometimes the people filling them fail to deliver the quality of service your brand promises. Training and skills development are excellent tools, but they should be thought of as tactics to enhance already-existing characteristics, ones that can't always be be taught. When hiring hourly employees for your restaurant, ensure they fit front-line job requirements by looking for these characteristics:
In the spirit of "Aligning the Future," the theme of APSCU's (now CECU) 2016 Annual Conference on June 6th, Penn Foster joined the conversation by discussing the positive impact on non-traditional learners that  blended learning programs can produce for students. While introducing the findings from the Center for Promise's latest report on blended learning, we shared some of the best practices organizations have utilized when implementing successful blended approaches on their campuses.
In order to stay competitive in today's marketplace, large corporations are jumping at the chance to partner with ed-tech providers and colleges to offer education pathway programs for employees. Multinational corporations such as Chipotle and Wal-Mart are investing in these partnerships in order to attract and retain talent.1 But this begs the question as to what small businesses are capable of in terms of providing similar opportunities. Certain niche providers are starting to pop up to cater to this sector, in order to reach working learners who happen to work at the local, family-owned coffee shop instead of a Starbucks.
Many people believe jobs in the retail or quick-service restaurant industries are meant to be short-term. This leads to high turnover rates in both industries, which in turn makes promoting from within difficult. Hiring managers in these industries may wish to institute certain programs to help them retain their best employees and groom them for management roles. With some inspiration from leadership, star workers can be long-term staff members.
The thought of juggling both work and class can often be a roadblock for employees who'd like to go back to school. At first glance, employers might be reluctant to hire workers who are juggling several external responsibilities. But employers who support their employees in earning a degree can reap a variety of benefits, including increased loyalty, higher retention rates, and greater engagement at work. Here's how you can help ease your employee's education journey.
With the recent changes to the FAFSA, scam artists are targeting students who need help filling out the form. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recently initiated claims of $5.2 million in damages against one company, Student Financial Aid Services, Inc., alleging that they promised students free help but then charged recurring fees to their credit cards.1,2 Unfortunately, this is only one example of numerous scams currently targeting students.

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