Over the last few weeks, our university trustees and I have been laying the groundwork for our next strategic planning process, charting out potential key strategic themes. We found ourselves focused on technology in a big way, so much so that the Board seemed unanimous in agreement that Saybrook University has a big part to play in this area. Questions emerged including: how do we address the role of technology in the virtual classroom that maximizes student learning? How much focus do we need to place on the role of technology and the human experience, including artificial intelligence and virtual reality?
Many institutions of higher learning, businesses, government, K-12 education, etc., have been slow to recognize the stark reality that, like the industrial revolutions of the late 18th and early 20th centuries, the role of technology is going to be a massive force for change resulting in a complete realignment of jobs and services over the next 20-25 years.
What do innovations like Alexa, Sophia (see the video above and refer to the National Geographic article here), the emerging blockchain technology, and virtual reality mean for how we deliver education? How do these and myriad other innovations impact the human experience? What should Saybrook University's response be to this seismic shift occurring in our country and around the globe? Most importantly, how can our community of scholar-practitioners prepare our students for a future that looks incredibly different than present-day reality?
What say you?