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Competency-Based Education

Higher Ed CBE Platform Adds Company 'Friending' to Feature Set

An online learning platform used in 50 colleges and universities has introduced a new feature that lets those institutions "friend" companies that are potential landing pads for their graduates.

Fidelis Education, which refers to itself as a "learning relationship management" program, was originally built specifically to help veterans transition into higher ed. Having grown beyond that customer base, the program supports competency-based education, e-portfolios and micro-credentialing and includes a taxonomy of "in-demand" competencies. Fidelis also helps institutions manage student services such as tutoring, mentoring and career planning.

Organizations that link to an institution through "friending" it can share content, offer mentoring and publish employment opportunities. The software uses an algorithm that measures "likelihood of mutual benefit" to help students home in on possible mentors with similar interests, geographic locations and likelihood of meaningful and beneficial collaborations.

The application includes services for the institutions, enabling them to promote teaching or tutoring jobs related to a given company's expertise; employees, allowing them to identify relevant content and courses at the university; and college students, allowing them to access corporate training opportunities from their school's partners.

One school that is testing the new service is Frostburg State University in Maryland. "For many students, successful transition from college to the workforce hinges as much on their ability to navigate out-of-class resources and relationships that lead to a career as it does on the core academic experience," said Tom Bowling, vice president of student affairs, in a prepared statement. "The Fidelis platform helps bridge the gap that often exists between academic success and career success, and enables us to strengthen relationships with the potential employers of our graduates."

Other customers of Fidelis have included Bryan University in Arizona, American Public University in West Virginia and Lipscomb University in Nashville.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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