The state of Maryland recently announced that it would no longer require a bachelor’s degree in the hiring process for nearly half of its jobs, joining a growing number of companies and other employers.A recent episode of The Key, Inside Higher Ed’s news and analysis podcast, explored Maryland’s decision to look beyond the four-year degree and the implications for higher education. Bridgette Gray, chief customer officer at the nonprofit group [email protected], which is helping Maryland identify nondegreed workers to fill jobs in technology, administration and customer service, describes the market conditions that prompted the state’s decision and why equity was a primary factor behind its move.
Brandon Busteed, chief partnership officer and global head of learn-work innovation at Kaplan, discusses the larger forces at play and explains how colleges and universities can respond in ways that not only sustain their relevance but position them better for the coming changes and how learning is likely to happen.
An edited transcript of the podcast conversation follows.
Inside Higher Ed: Could you briefly outline the new policy Maryland has put in place to eliminate the bachelor’s degree as a requirement for thousands of the state’s jobs?
Gray: As we think about the pandemic and the recovery from the pandemic, Maryland has made the decision to remove degree requirements from thousands of jobs that it has determined no longer need a four-year bachelor’s degree. They were having trouble filling their talent pipelines and the thought was, let’s just remove degree requirements from jobs that we feel like don’t necessari …