In its 2016 report, The Future of Jobs, the World Economic Forum revealed that nearly 50 percent of subject knowledge acquired during the first year of a four-year technical degree is outdated by the time students graduate.

A wave of job creation last month may have knocked the unemployment rate down to 5.9 percent— its lowest level in nearly a decade— but in an increasingly complex world, a state of perpetual flux is the only constant in the job market. As we enter yet another industrial revolution, one that promises to blend our physical, digital, and even biological worlds, staying sharp and productive in the workplace is no longer just an issue for those on the cusp of retirement.

In educated urban areas, such as Toronto, a post-secondary degree is not sufficient to remain competitive to differentiate oneself from other professionals currently working in or looking to pursue the same job. An ever-increasing number of employers now require some form of degree or certification as a prerequisite for any employee joining their company.

“Employers are no longer as willing to ‘train-up’ employees. They want them to come in with more skills,” says Tina Kotsiomitis, Associate Dean from of the Faculty of Continuing and Professional Studies at Sheridan College. “This has resulted in an increasing number of college and university graduates taking certificate programs in order to give them that edge in the job market.”

Lifelong learning is easier than ever

Fortunately, lifelong learning, professional development, and general interest learning are  easier than ever before. Realizing the benefits to both employees and employers, institutions like Sheridan College are increasingly focused on providing concrete career tools and supporting transferable skills in multiple ways.

“If you’re currently working in a professional environment and looking for upward mobility, we have certificate programs for that, or if you’re looking to learn new technology to keep up with the changes in your current job, we also have courses for that,” says Kotsiomitis. “We keep our eye on the market so that we know what employers want and need, while our faculty remain active in their industries, enabling us to update programs quickly and effectively.”

Programs are created with students in mind

Programs at Sheridan are designed to account for the need to manage professional and personal responsibilities while acquiring new skills and credentials. Many courses are available in the evenings, part-time, or online, making it easy to incorporate ongoing education into a career plan. With more than 200 online courses falling under 22 programs and multiple learning environments, Sheridan offers the flexibility and freedom to learn when it’s convenient.

“There's a huge boom in online learning— our numbers have increased more than 20 percent in the last two years alone,” says Kotsiomitis, in outlining how Sheridan responds to student needs. “Because students value the flexibility of online learning, our goal is to make all of our courses available online.”

Have a look at the variety of courses Sheridan offers and you'll quickly find that Sheridan is your one stop shop for continuing and professional studies.