Giving the Next Generation New Tools to Compete

Going forward, how will we equip our kids to compete?

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Is it getting a job with some company?

What categories will these jobs take?

The traditional ones -  farm, fish, mine, manufacture, manage, heal, teach, build and  defend come to mind.

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Let me take you on a different journey, the journey in your fertile imagination, where Jamaicans everywhere are participating smack dab in the heart of the knowledge economy.

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Why is this important?

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Well, with the current economic meltdown, and loss of wealth in pension funds, 401K portfolios, and real estate, a driving  demand to replenish these bare cupboards will be upon us soon. The Internet will play a critical role in providing new capabilities. The human component of this renewal will be the intellectual muscles we bring to bear. Our intellectual capital capability will separate the men from the boys.

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Yes our ginnal factor will be our competitive edge!  We will need to practice the cunning of Anansi coupled with the integrity of a dove.

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Imagine a place where folks  are supporting themselves and their families by arranging words, images and sounds. How about  developing a high value knowledge economy infrastructure that will create work for others too.  Yes I know of our Reggae stars, and Oliver.  But show me how their  business model is having a large wealth big foot that is contributing significantly to the nation’s GDP?

How big are we thinking  folks?

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Knowledge as expressed through the currency of words have  major influences on our lives. They  shape our  governance, provide a conception of our time,  and forge our culture.  Google has become one of our most frequent verbs.

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I got a present snapshot of where our brave new world is heading when I attended an Expo last week at  the US Patent office. This expo was celebrating , promoting the development, management, and protecting of intellectual capital.   There was  a parade of  trademark characters, music, speeches and a ribbon cutting.  Attendees enjoyed and interacted with such iconic trademark costume characters as Popeye, Olive Oyl, Dennis the Menace, Betty Boop, and Curious George .

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Popeye and I clowning around

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Visitors learned about the vital role trademarks play in the global economy at many exhibit booths and educational workshops. Total attendance for the two-day Expo exceeded 7,000.  I was struck by the many kids who attended.  Kids of elementary school age were the most visible attendees. Parents and teachers appreciate that the future belongs to those who can use knowledge to create new realities.

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How many batteries have you bought because of his tireless ways?

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I know this brave new world of the Internet is giving many parents pause as the dark side of the web is keeping them on the virtual sidelines.  I think this is a strategic error.

The approach I have taken, and encouraged is to equip them with the necessary skill to avoid the dangers.  I am sure you have taught your kids to use the stove without being burned.  Use the same principle here to fully equip your child in this very competitive, global world.

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Let me share a resource that will help you and your child navigate the web safely.

Click to play resource

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Click for test for child Internet Test

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“The future is something which everyone reaches at the rate of sixty minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.”

(C.S. Lewis)

 

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