I found myself listening to a pretty powerful group of people talk yesterday about the economic trends in my hometown, Richmond VA. Jim Bacon, Jeff Cooke, Michael Sesnowitz, and Greg Wingfield all sat around – well, on stage – and talked about whether or not events like the Wachovia Securities move from RVA to St. Louis would cause an economic tremor in River City.
When I heard about the WachSec/AG Edwards merger, my reaction was "Opportunity!" – for new businesses, for watching some real-time change management, and for writing a new chapter in the Story of River City. Turns out I’m with the smart set on this one, since that was the consensus of the experts.
The presence ofVCU – and the engagement between VCU and the region’s business community – is a prime example of how the practical application of knowledge can be the storied tide that lifts all boats. A university that’s plugged into business trends provides learning – and a workforce – that’s relevant to need AND that drives innovation. The very model of win/win.
The interplay and collaboration between education and business would really make an impact in primary education, too – wouldn’t it be great if kids were taught early to find a need and fill it, rather than to get-good-grades-and-a-job? The primary/secondary public education system seems stuck in a 19th century model. Some concrete input from the business community on early education might address that – who’s up for pitching that to the Board of Ed…?