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Employers have long sought out candidates with strong personal skills for a wide variety of jobs. We’ve all worked with someone who is just comfortable interacting with colleagues and is also a great example of someone who is dependable. This individual has honed their personal skills. They communicate effectively with others, self-express, and self-manage.

Personal skills not only shape a person’s professional trajectory but their private life as well. Overall, employers look for job candidates with strong personal skills because they contribute positively to the rest of the workforce and are better able to affect positive outcomes for their companies.

What Are Personal Skills and Why Are They so Important?

Hard skills are those that can, and always have been, measured, like welding or blueprint reading, personal skills are soft skills – intangible qualities or traits that enhance our interactions. They are just as, if not more, important to employers, although it is key to have a mix of both. 

Those with strong personal skills are typically more reliable, meet deadlines, and complete tasks more efficiently. In addition, they are usually more motivated and passionate about their work which leads to better success.

Character and leadership instruction is not new to the classroom. Over a decade ago, organizations like P21 began developing collaborations between business and education to help the K-12 community address a need for stronger “soft skills” in the future workforce.  In a recent post-secondary push, education “think tanks” like Education Design Lab and grant-funded private initiatives like New World of Work, have been working with the collegiate sector to develop soft skill training programs.  All of these training programs have one shortfall – they only address skills through classroom instruction and/or independent learning.  In education terms, they fail to require learners to engage in higher-order thinking skills as they relate to personal development.

GPSEd’s Immersive Learning Model.

Since the year 2000 GPSEd has been practicing and refining the instructional technique of “immersive learning”.  Challenging students to learn by doing, in a model more commonly seen in popular education practices like project-based learning, immersive learning asks students to develop skills in an authentic environment.  With on-the-job development and assessment of employability, professional, and leadership skills, students who engage in the GPSEd Personal Development Program™ are able to amplify learning and growth.

      

What is the GPSEd Personal Development Program™?

The GPSEd Personal Development Program™ is an educational best practice built to develop and certify soft skills students will need to not only gain and retain employment but to continually improve the quality of their lives by effectively working towards personal goals.   

  • Competency-Based: Skills are described as observable, measurable actions.  This practice helps to provide concrete expectations of typically abstract skills.
  • Data-Driven: Holistic rubrics describe visible student progress toward mastery of each skill allowing students to monitor growth and seek targeted practice opportunities.
  • Progressive Skill Development: Just as math instruction begins with foundational skill development, the traits identified by GPS have been deconstructed into smaller, stackable skills.  This building-block model allows for the celebration of small successes toward the development of industry-desired traits.
  • Growth Mindset Construction: The program design allows for measurable progress to be achieved in the construct of a school semester.  The depth of content and skill progression provide a learning tool that can be reused in order to achieve continuous personal development, modeling the concept of growth mindset.

GPSEd Program Certificate Tiers

GPSEd prepares students for employment by helping them develop the soft skills that are critical to success in any career. Much of our student’s transformation is based on their willingness and ability to demonstrate these skills both on and off the job and in the classroom. 

Our business partners are key in developing a student’s readiness for employment by expecting and assessing in the workplace how well the student works with others, communicates and listens, and brings a positive attitude to work. 

GPSEd students are trained to develop and emphasize their soft skills in job applications, resumes, cover letters, and interviews so that they stand out and employers see them for what they are- their future generation workforce.

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