Intergenerational, intercultural, interactive – The 2015 edition of JADE’s Generations Club: Transforming Europe into an entrepreneurial society

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Written by Kassandra Petersen, Vice President – Director of Public Affairs Policy, Communication and Alumni Management

Under the theme “An Intergenerational Action Plan on the Entrepreneurial Education & Skill Gap Challenge in Europe” JADE’s Generations Club will be presented on November 20th  in its 9th edition.

Since the first edition of Generations Club in 2007, the event has aimed to build bridges between the senior and the junior generation in order to foster entrepreneurial culture.

From its very early editions on, e.g. with topics as:  “The Battle for knowledge”, “How is technology changing the workplace of today?”, “What do you believe will be the biggest change we will see in the workplace of 2025?”, the dialogue and knowledge exchange on crucial challenges in education, youth entrepreneurship and employability had been fostered.

But this years’ edition will go one step further. For the 2015 edition, in comparison, we are not only inviting seniors of the corporate and public sector, such as EUROCHAMBERS, OECD, World Bank, Covestro, EY, Microsoft and Members of the European Commission but also dedicated representatives of higher education programmes and institutes fostering entrepreneurship education in- and outside of the European centre of policy making, as well as representatives of some of the largest youth organisations in Europe, among others ELSA, AEGEE, AIESEC and ESN, in order to combine the view of a truly representative scope of Europe’s young people.

JADE Generations Club 2014Based on JADE’s Generations Report of 2014 –A youth perspective on entrepreneurial skills and JADE’s commitment to the Educational Transformation Agreement signed in 2014 with Microsoft, JADE will stronger than ever tackle a topic that every student and soon-to-be graduate fears with youth unemployment rates barely changing since its peak during the economic crisis. Moreover, young people, aged between 16 and 29 years old, have been not only severely hit by the global economic crisis, but the scars are enduring with the youth unemployment rate being practically three times higher than it is the case for their adult counterparts. More than ever, young people are asking themselves while pursuing a university career: “Am I prepared to enter the working life and/ or to start off my own entrepreneurial career?  What can a company/ educational institute provide me with in order to help me taking this step into a fulfilling and satisfactory work life? “.

Yet, the employability of youth depends inevitably on the skills they can bring to the labour market –  which means to get a job today, but also the ability to adapt to future labour market needs, whatever they might be. Youth skills are of little value if young people remain outside or on the margins of the labour market, or if their skills are not used effectively in the workplace. More than 40 percent of the enterprises in EU regions and sectors claim that they cannot meet their needs for labour and skills despite high unemployment and graduates being spite out by universities and other higher educational institutes. To reverse this untoward uprising trends of skill mismatch and unemployment, the young generation needs to understand the job market in order to be able to develop the right qualification for their career.  On the other hand, the job market, as well as Europe’s policy makers, need to understand the young generation needs and demands in order to be able to fill position where there is high demand of specific skills, to keep up with the dynamism of emerging skills, to encourage and make space for a fulfilling work life driven by creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship.

JADE Generations Club 2014_This invitation-only event will therefore elaborate high quality upshots in terms of recommendations for policy makers, business leaders and young people in Europe. In order to do so JADE’s Generations Club is focusing on two topics: the first topic consists in an inclusive roundtable discussion about “The Education & Skill Gap Challenge in Europe – What do students and companies truly need nowadays?”, while the second topic “Confronting the skills mismatch in Europe – transforming Europe in an entrepreneurial society” will take place in a very distinctive format of group discussions, combing the opinion of many highly motivated and exceptional participants, guaranteeing inspirational and fruitful discussions, innovative ideas and a high-quality outcome – an Intergenerational Action Plan, signed by all stakeholders, on fostering the entrepreneurial education in order to transform Europe into an actual entrepreneurial and sustainable society.

One of the many ways JADE will contribute to this needed transformation will be presented during this day with a project JADE is currently working on- the JADE MOCC, which will foster the acquisition of digital and hard skills of our network through online trainings and webinars specialized on STEM and entrepreneurial skills, offering each month new content and new learning opportunities and preparing young people for a future in the digital market.

About the author

Kassandra Petersen JADEMs. Kassandra Petersen is JADE’s Vice President and Director of Communication & Public Affairs Policy. She worked for a Junior Enterprise in the process management while graduating from the University of Nuremberg with a Master’s in International Business Law and Management, receiving 2 scholarships. She has extensive working experience in advisory, legal and public diplomacy.  Furthermore, she was mentee of the adidas AG, had in-depth speech, negotiation and intercultural management training throughout her university career and the Model UN-programme, was an observer for the OAS during presidential elections in Mexico and an intern for the Permanent Mission of Germany to the UN in NYC. 

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