Practical Lifelong Learning

By learning new digital marketing skills, this Udacity student was able to break new career ground for herself … at her current company! Here’s why they created a new role, just for her.

Udacity - Practical Lifelong Learning - Digital Marketing

Meet Kat Halo. She works as a medical assistant in a prominent dermatology office; a career she was inspired to pursue after seeing the incredible care her father received throughout his battle with cancer. She loves the experience of supporting and caring for her patients, but she’s also been wrestling with a growing need for more creative fulfillment. Her partner works in marketing analytics, and she’s been curious about his projects. When her office started investing in some digital marketing efforts, she recognized an opportunity:

“I started paying close attention to how these new marketing initiatives were being conducted, and I continually found myself thinking, ‘I bet I could do this!’”

The marketing budget was already allocated to another provider, however, but that didn’t stop Kat. She decided to learn the skills on her own:

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Celebrate Lifelong Learning at Udacity’s Intersect 2018 Conference

Purchase Early Bird tickets for Intersect 2018 today!

Udacity - Intersect 2018 - Celebrate Lifelong Learning

Udacity’s Intersect 2018 conference is dedicated to the theme of Lifelong Learning. We chose this theme because each of us must embrace this ethos to succeed in our modern economy, and it is Udacity’s mission to provide meaningful access to world-class learning opportunities for every deserving student on the planet. We support lifelong learners of every age and experience level, and we are committed to connecting your learning to your career and life goals.

Conference Speakers

Udacity 2018 will bring together a remarkable group of speakers to share insights, engage with attendees, and explore compelling visions for the future. These forward-thinking leaders and innovators are working across myriad fields to ensure that emerging transformational technologies are being harnessed to serve the good of all, and that the rapid pace of innovation is met in equal measure with rapid advancements in how we teach and train our global workforce. Intersect 2018 speakers include:

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Struggling to Find Inspiration on LinkedIn? Look Again!

Inspiration on LinkedIn - Udacity

When we’re down, feeling unmotivated, and in need of a spark, we often turn to the internet for help. We go looking for those stories that energize and inspire us. We want to be uplifted. But inspiration is not all we go looking for—we seek information as well.  We want knowledge, evidence, facts. We want to know what it takes to succeed, and how to get it.

There was a time when inspiration-seekers would go to LinkedIn for all the above and more.

But today, many people complain of shady recruiting solicitations, and too many self-proclaimed influencers parroting empty clichés. They bemoan a ceaseless parade of pinterest-esque aphorisms about leadership, and smug recitations of how someone hired someone despite their lack of qualifications. Many have taken to LinkedIn to complain about the above, and many others have complained about the complaints.

If these trends have put you off LinkedIn, you’re apparently not alone.

But we encourage you to look again at LinkedIn, because amongst all the noise and chatter, there can still be found powerful stories from hard-working lifelong learners who are accomplishing amazing things in their lives every day.

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You too (and U2!) must embrace Lifelong Learning

Lifelong Learning - Udacity - U2

If you’d asked us last month whether we expected to be mentioning Thomas L. Friedman, Bono, and Forbes in the same breath with the term lifelong learning, we might have briefly gazed quizzically into the distance, contemplated the possibility, then likely just returned to the daily reality of trying to deliver the best learning experience on the planet.

However, as it turns out, you’d have been the prophetic one if you’d proposed the idea, because Thomas L. Friedman and Bono are indeed together in Forbes discussing lifelong learning, and while the pairing may seem unusual, the insights throughout are laser-precise, and together they present a clear exhortation to embrace the path of lifelong learning.

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On Lifelong Learning, Parenting, and Career Change

How a former professor turned stay-at-home parent enrolled with Udacity and became a Data Analyst

Lifelong Learning - Parenting - Career Change - Udadity

I’d like to introduce you to Kevin. He’s a husband, father, and today, a data analyst. But that wasn’t always the case. A few years ago, his family undertook a major change that significantly impacted his life and career. At that time, he was teaching Arabic as an assistant professor at Appalachian State University.

The change was set in motion when his wife was offered an incredible career opportunity in her hometown of Austin, TX. Together, they made the decision to put Kevin’s career on hold so that she could pursue hers. With their 1-year-old son in tow, they trekked west, and Kevin became a stay-at-home dad.

Suddenly, his daily schedule shifted dramatically from being on the university campus all day teaching, grading and conducting research, to being in their new Austin home with his son, feeding, diapering, bathing, dressing, cleaning up, doing laundry and managing naptime.

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Put Your Soul Into It: Lifelong Learning and The Pursuit of Happiness

Student Success - Lifelong Learning - Cloud Nine - Udacity

As a young professional in the banking industry, Jennifer Tsou worked as a Relationship Banker—providing personal financial counseling, assisting with lending services, and building relationships with customers. Her university education—focused on finance and economics—provided her with the tools she needed to be successful in her role. Her career in banking afforded her stability, and the opportunity to further develop her customer relations skills. Still, she often found herself questioning her path. She occasionally indulged herself by imagining doing something different with her life and career, only to remind herself she should be happy to have a job.

Something was definitely missing.

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The Importance of Persistence and Curiosity in a Knowledge Economy

Persistence and Curiosity - Knowledge Economy

Understanding how persistence and curiosity can impact one’s career goals is important for anyone at any stage of career development, particularly in light of our continuing transformation into a knowledge economy, and the critical importance of embracing lifelong learning. It is especially important to recognize how the skills you learn, the knowledge you accrue, and the experience you gain, can translate to “value” for both yourself, and for employers. Finally, it can be instructive to explore concepts like planned happenstance and growth mindset, and to investigate differences between persistence and resilience, in order to effectively identify your personal strengths, and those areas you want to improve on.

The two most important traits in a job candidate

A recent Business Insider article highlighted an episode of Reid Hoffman’s podcast “Masters of Scale” that featured Alphabet’s Eric Schmidt as the guest. In the episode, Schmidt identifies what he believes to be the two most important traits in a job candidate—persistence and curiosity.

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