Frank Britt

Frank Britt is the CEO of Penn Foster, a leading career-focused online and hybrid education institution that annually supports over 100,000 active students and 1,000 institutions nationwide. His mission is to create a national movement to better connect education, career pathways and job creation, and to promote affordable learning.
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Recent Posts

How Demand for Middle Skills is Shaping the Labor Market

Posted by Frank Britt on 4/20/18 4:30 PM

5 Key Insights on the Future of the Labor Market

The ‘skills gaps’ is an acute issue, and is a natural byproduct of structural shifts in the economy. Three major factors are at play to create a job market unique in living memory. First, though the pattern of today generally matches prior generations, the pace of change is accelerating, and the nature of innovation is different.

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Topics: Middle Skills Gap, Employers

Workforce Participation: A Missing Link in Closing the Skills Gap

Posted by Frank Britt on 4/9/18 3:47 PM

How to Work Together to Encourage – and Better Train – Workers Sitting on the Side Lines of a Full Employment Economy

The Labor Department’s latest monthly jobs report, this one covering March 2018, was out on the street Friday. And frankly, not a lot has changed: the unemployment rate was 4.1 percent for the sixth consecutive month, and the number of unemployed persons, at 6.6 million, also did not budge much.
 
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Topics: Middle Skills Gap, Industry News, Skills Gap

February Job Report Signals an Even Stronger Reason to Tackle the Skills Gap

Posted by Frank Britt on 3/9/18 3:05 PM

One of the great things about our country is that we are not just defined by what’s happened in the past, we’re also shaped by the possibilities of the future.  So, on a day that is the ultimate definition of the “present,” the monthly release of the Labor Department’s jobs report, I think we should celebrate – but only for a quick moment – the positive numbers and look ahead to what we can all do to make the jobs environment even better in that future we can still invent.

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Topics: Middle Skills Gap, Industry News, Upskilling, Skills Gap

The Troubling Erosion of Trust between Youth and Established Support Systems

Posted by Frank Britt on 5/30/17 9:00 AM

Across America, young adults are experiencing a macro erosion of trust towards established support systems. This trust deficit cuts across all income classes, but it is especially prevalent among youth in traditional institutions, and most acute in the school setting.

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Top Takeaways from ASU + GSV Summit 2017

Posted by Frank Britt on 5/15/17 6:15 PM

Last week, we were honored and thrilled to have participated in this year’s at-capacity ASU + GSV Education Technology Summit which assembled leaders from more than 400 of the world’s most important enterprise learning and talent companies to discuss education and technology innovations. It was inspiring to join the conversation on how we can build bridges between local and national organizations in order to address the skills shortage and improve worker employability and workforce effectiveness. I wanted to share my top takeaways from this incredibly energizing summit:

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Topics: Employers, Training, Skills Gap, Skilled Trades

Witnessing Innovation at the Spark Point

Posted by Frank Britt on 5/5/17 9:00 AM

Last weekend, I had the privilege and honor to be a guest judge for the Open Track of the President’s Innovation Challenge at the Harvard Innovation Labs. The Innovation Challenge aims to support Harvard students on their journeys to turn their desire for a
better world into a sustainable venture. Specifically, this year’s finalists are trying to solve social issues (equitability, sustainability, safety), to respond to the desperate need for innovation within the health and life sciences industry, and to innovate in other areas that
would help a cross section of industries such as computing.

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Topics: Industry News, Higher Ed

How Organizations of All Kinds Can Support High School Dropouts

Posted by Frank Britt on 8/25/16 1:01 PM

According to the U.S. Department of Education’s Trends in High School Dropout and Completion Rates in the United States: 1972-2012 published in 2015, the average high school dropout costs the economy approximately $250,000 over his or her lifetime. With the average life expectancy of 79 years, this equates to $4,166 as an annual cost to the economy. Employers, educators, and government organizations are making purposeful commitments to providing pathways for young people who have aged out of compulsory school to achieve their high school diploma and prepare for the workforce or higher education. Here we touch upon how myriad stakeholders can help these students that have typically aged-out of the traditional k-12 system - and why they’d want to.

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Topics: Youth Organizations, Public & Private High Schools, Employers, Colleges & Career Schools

How We Can Make CTE More Efficient and Effective - Part III, Filling the Middle Skill Jobs of Today and Tomorrow

Posted by Frank Britt on 6/14/16 11:00 AM

For many Americans, “higher education” still means a four-year degree. However, with unemployment hovering around 5.5 percent and with many students graduating from four-year institutions unable to find jobs, our perception of the costs and benefits of education needs to change. Degrees that prepare students for middle-skilled careers are often ignored or rejected, but education leaders need to realize that, as valuable as four-year degrees may be, they are not practical for every student, especially given that these students are saddled with an average of $26,600 of debt overall,1 and $32,700 when graduating from for-profit colleges.2

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Topics: High School Completion, Middle Skills Gap, College Enrollment & Retention

How We Can Make CTE More Efficient and Effective, Part II: CTE at the High School Level

Posted by Frank Britt on 5/31/16 11:12 AM

Employment-focused education for “middle-skill” occupations is becoming increasingly relevant. More than 850,000 K-12 students in the U.S. are classified as “vocational,” which encompasses CTE fields and makes up just around 2% of total students. The cost to educate these students is nearly $14,000 or 20-40% greater than that of traditional academic instruction. In recent years, approximately $13 billion has been spent annually by federal, state and local governments to support youth-focused vocational education systems across the U.S., with federal funding constituting only about 4-8% percent of all state and local spending.1 This is in addition to the $16 billion post-high school trade and technical school-industry.

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Topics: High School Completion, Middle Skills Gap, Public & Private High Schools

How We Can Make CTE More Efficient and Effective - Part I

Posted by Frank Britt on 5/17/16 12:49 PM

To date, a lot of good has been done for Career Technical Education (CTE). Lives have been changed and skills have been built, as institutions and dedicated faculty have been well-preparing students for careers in CTE.  In this series, we’ll talk about how to build on the strong foundation of CTE and evolve the system while innovating for the future.

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Topics: High School Completion, Middle Skills Gap, College Enrollment & Retention

 

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