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LIMBA – Jeremy Brown PhD – Dowling President

May 18, 2012 @ 12:00 am EDT


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Dr. Jeremy Brown, president of Dowling College, was our speaker this morning, and he got our attention when he stated that more information was made available last year than in the previous 5,000. The implication is that this avalanche of information is likely to continue. Moreover that information is available worldwide and America no longer has the natural advantage. The competitiveness of other regions of the world will force us to think anew on how to remain the economic leader.

Accord to Brown, training for specific skills may still be appropriate, but the expected reality is that a student will encounter opportunities that require quite different skills. Therefore the training of student should address that probability. Specific training should be looked upon as a platform from which to grow, according to Brown. Change being a constant is what we need to adapt to, bearing in mind that we may have numerous jobs over a lifetime.

College needs to be entrepreneurial, and the arts may be as important as hard sciences. In other words creativity is nurtured by more than an assemblage of “facts.”

Dr Brown thinks failure has a bad and undeserving name (my words). Failure is the process that helps us discard the ideas that are unworkable and leads to solutions.

As far as non-academic pursuits such as sports are concerned, they have value too. Dr Brown told us that he has learned much playing basketball that gave him knowledge that was converted usefully in his serious endeavors.

The feeling I got from the meeting was that we are in a new world. We are grappling with new concepts of learning and working, and we are learning all the time about the new chapter. Moreover that new chapter will help write the next chapter. The future may be a bit scary, but scary can also be exciting.