Audit: Minn. colleges need tighter focus on jobsby Tim Post, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A new report from the state's legislative auditor says MnSCU should do a better job monitoring market needs as it fashions programs at its two-year colleges.
The report, from the Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor, says overall the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system does a good job responding to economic conditions and educating and training workers.
But the report says not all campuses match their programs to the job market, give students adequate information about their future job prospects, or monitor students' post-graduation employment closely.
Project manager Jody Hauer said there are often gaps in the information on job prospects getting to students. "That was particularly important for those students that have chosen a field where the job prospects might not be as rosy as they are in other areas, or for those students who are in a program where they would have to move outside of their region in order to find related work once they complete their program," said Hauer.
MnSCU's Linda Kohl says they're working with employers to better determine the kind of training workers need.
"Our presidents, the chancellor and senior staff have gone and visited at least 10 business leaders each -- so probably 400 business visits we have been conducting, to try and found out what needs employers have and what they would like to see from us. So we're very receptive to that kind of suggestion," Kohl said.
Kohl said MnSCU is also working to better inform students on job prospects and track their post-graduation progress.