The benefits of upskilling with NKU’s online courses

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This content is sponsored by Northern Kentucky University.

If you’re looking to brush up on your professional skills, Northern Kentucky University has flexible, online courses specifically designed for those seeking to continue their education and grow in their current positions. 

These online courses are self-paced, online and taught by expert instructors from top universities and industry professionals. Most courses take just 6 to 12 weeks to complete. The curriculum is even customizable based on industry and company requirements.

NKU’s online courses are offered in a variety of topics and designed to meet the needs of the current workforce:

NKU offers a variety of topics designed to mee the needs of the current workforce.| Provided: NKU

Upskilling for the future

If you aren’t aware of what ‘Upskilling’ is, it is the process of teaching additional skills to existing employees. Widely considered the new ‘employee benefit’, training is becoming more important in the workplace in terms of retention and recruitment.

Not only is it important to employers but also prospective workers. According to a recent study done by Gallup called The American Upskilling Study, young workers consider upskilling to be a more important benefit than paid vacation. Nearly two-thirds of workers believe employer-provided upskilling is very important to evaluating a job whether it is their current job or a potential new job. The study states that for young adults, aged 18 to 24, upskilling is deemed the third most important benefit when evaluating a new job, behind only health insurance and disability and ahead of retirement, life insurance, sick leave, parental leave and vacation. 

Companies that offer professional development like upskilling tend to garner more interest among the applicant pool. In the same study, 38% of the participants said they would be ‘very likely’ to switch to a new job at a different employer if that prospective employer offered training/education opportunities to upgrade their skills. 

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NKU offers flexible education solutions

NKU’s ENTERprise office can also assist your company with providing professional development opportunities for your current employees. Career development is important in any role to ensure that employees stay on the cutting edge of their profession. NKU’s own staff members are even taking advantage of these upskilling online courses. 

Lindsay Lomax Haegele, Associate Director of Alumni Outreach & Communications from NKU’s Office of Alumni Engagement & Annual Giving is currently taking an online course. “As I was working through my performance review with my supervisor, I made note of my opportunities both in terms of tasks and personal development.,” said Haegele. “I could take courses and work through certifications to improve, or gain clarity. Being in the communications field, I already had a pretty solid understanding of both project management and writing; these are things I do every day. But taking both of these skills a step further would enhance so many aspects of my position.”

So far, Haegele has completed the Google SEO Basics certification and is currently in the process of completing the Google Project Management program. “Both programs have benefited me, reinforcing existing knowledge I have, and reminding me of tools and skills I can reintegrate into my job immediately. Additionally, I have learned further detailed processes and perspectives through which I can assess and improve across all job functions I fill, helping to chip away at some of the opportunities initially noted in my review,” said Haegele.

Haegele even encouraged her colleague, Shelby Lillie, Coordinator of Alumni Outreach & Communications, to pursue NKU’s courses to assist Lillie with writing articles, social content, web copy and building out email communications. “I committed to completing the course with her so that we could talk about how what she is learning applies to the work we do. We can chat about nuance and I better understand her questions through my personal interaction with the course.”

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The thing that Haegele and Lillie liked most about online courses? The flexibility. “The main reason we chose online courses was because it was completely self-managed. While there are recommended time frames to keep you on a completion pathway, there is flexibility in pushing deadlines,” said Haegele. “ I have also enjoyed the ability to reconnect with a lesson that may require a revisit to understand and the MANY resources provided within the courses that are yours to save, bookmark and reuse at your discretion.”

To learn more about NKU’s online courses and professional development, please click here.

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