The landscape of credentialing programs in educational institutions is undergoing a profound transformation. With the advent of the Learning and Employment Record (LER) ecosystem, schools and organizations issuing credentials are presented with a unique opportunity to reshape the way they serve individuals and contribute to their holistic development. In this article, we will explore the strategies, both logistical and technical, that educational institutions should consider over the next two years to align themselves with this evolving ecosystem and better serve their students and professionals. It’s time for schools to view their credentials not merely as badges but as verifiable evidence of talent.
1. Rethinking Credentials: From Badges to Verifiable Talent Evidence
Educational institutions should begin by reevaluating their approach to credentialing. Traditionally, badges and certificates have been viewed as symbols of achievement within specific communities or domains. However, with innovations like Orca, which enable communities to issue credentials, these badges now hold the potential to serve as verifiable evidence of skills and experiences. Schools must recognize the transformative power of their credentials and the broader implications they can have in the LER ecosystem.
2. Embrace Preferred Wallet Partnerships
As the adoption of Wallets and Passports gains momentum, educational institutions should carefully consider their preferred wallet partners. These partners should not only provide a seamless experience for users but also align with the institution’s vision and values. Building strong partnerships with wallet providers can ensure that students and professionals have easy access to their credentials, making the transition to the LER ecosystem smoother.
3. Backing Wallet Startups
In addition to established wallet providers, schools should keep an eye on innovative startups entering the credentialing space. These startups often bring fresh perspectives and cutting-edge technologies that can enhance the user experience. By supporting and collaborating with such startups, educational institutions can contribute to the growth and diversification of the wallet ecosystem.
4. Encouraging Wallet Adoption
A crucial step for educational institutions is to develop strategies that encourage their students and alumni to adopt wallets. This can be achieved through educational campaigns, workshops, and partnerships with wallet providers to offer incentives for adoption. The goal is to create a culture where individuals view wallets as valuable tools for managing and showcasing their credentials.
5. Cultivating Relationships with 3rd Party Wallet Providers
Even if an educational institution decides to issue its own wallet, it should not exist in isolation. Interoperability is key to the success of the LER ecosystem. Therefore, institutions should actively cultivate relationships with third-party wallet providers. This ensures that individuals have the flexibility to choose the wallet that best suits their needs while still accessing institution-issued credentials.
The future of credentialing programs in educational institutions is intrinsically tied to the emerging LER ecosystem. Schools should embrace this paradigm shift by reimagining their credentials as verifiable talent evidence. By strategically partnering with wallet providers, supporting innovative startups, and encouraging wallet adoption, institutions can play a pivotal role in shaping the future of education and employment. In doing so, they empower individuals to navigate their career journeys with confidence and flexibility. It’s time for educational institutions to embrace the LER revolution and become architects of a more inclusive, interconnected, and user-centric credentialing landscape.