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The STEM Community’s Soft Skills Gap & Strategies for Improvement

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Leadership - Human Connection - Communication - Creativity - Collaboration

What do these words have in common? Based on Dr. Haleh Karimi’s extensive research while preparing her 300-page dissertation, these are the five most valued Soft Skills employers will be seeking 2020-2025. The importance employers are currently placing on a candidate’s ability to make a human connection, in particular, resounded in Dr. Karimi’s interviews with 27 local employers. She found that “a study of recent global talent trends surveyed over 5,000 talent and hiring managers indicated that 92% of employers placed higher importance on soft skills over technical skills (“2019 Global Talent Trends”, 2019).”

Join our insightful discussion, led by Dr. Karimi, as she identifies the expanding role of Soft Skills in the STEM community. Which Soft Skills are the most imperative for job candidates to develop? Why are Soft Skills even more important in the future? What are solutions we can put into practice to equip the future workforce with Soft Skills? These answers, and more, will be uncovered and discussed in this critically relevant 3-Part RockIT Women Webinar Series.

Week #1: Soft Skills Missing in the Workforce and The Need for Soft Skills Competency in the Future of Work
10/14/21, Thursday @ 9-9:45 AM (EST)

  • Discuss how the Soft Skills deficit has affected industry in America.
  • Explain relevance and importance of Soft Skills regarding productivity, value, and competitiveness improvement.
  • Where does the US rank in Soft Skill comparison to the rest of the world?
  • Describe various Soft Skill components identified as critical success factors to develop a 21st-Century ready STEM workforce to achieve personal and organizational goals.
  • Understand why Soft Skills are important in relation to technological advancements and innovation opportunities.
  • Soft Skills Will Be the Driving Force of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).

Week #2: Strategies to Reduce the Soft Skills Gap
10/21/21, Thursday @ 9-9:45 AM (EST)

  • Expanding the role and increasing importance of Soft Skills training in higher education.
  • Business rationale for investing time and money in Soft Skills development and competency of our future workforce.
  • How to initiate, support, and manage experience-creating and knowledge-sharing communities within and outside of an organization.

Meet Haleh

Haleh has over two decades of experience building and leading strong teams to achieve organizational effectiveness in industries from non-profits, higher education, a startup to Fortune 500 organizations. Haleh is a University Lecturer at the College of Business at the University of Louisville, teaching Computer Information Technology. She is also a management/I.T. consultant to local and global businesses to provide strategic initiatives to grow and offer innovative products/services in their industries.


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