$10K Challenge Seeks CTE Skills-Gap Solutions

A company with a cloud-based application that connects students to prospective employers is sponsoring a challenge to generate new ideas for better connecting school outcomes to work. The top winner will be able to claim a prize of at least $5,000 and possibly more.

Viridis produces a platform for integrating student information systems, government databases and labor market information to bring students and jobs together. The platform includes features for students, schools and employers. Students gain a "universal skills passport" for maintaining an inventory of job skills and recommended pathways and programs of computer and technology education (CTE) programs catering to their interests and experiences; schools get access to student outcome data and dashboards that consolidate job placement details; and employers are promised a way to reduce the time it takes to fill their open jobs and lower new hire churn.

In the new challenge, which is being hosted through InnoCentive, Viridis wants to hear about proposals for bringing together stakeholders interested in closing the "skills gap," a term that describes the chasm that exists between the skills employers require and the skills students possess.

The primary recipient for the solution would be postsecondary students, particularly people enrolled in community college. And the solution itself would describe strategies for promoting data sharing among stakeholders — students, schools, employers and others.

The winning proposal will be awarded at least $5,000 (and possibly up to $10,000) in exchange for granting Viridis a royalty-free, perpetual and non-exclusive license to use any information offered in the proposal.

The deadline is April 24, 2017. To learn more, go the challenge page on InnoCentive here. To see all of the details, registration is required.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.