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Easier to loosen up from being disciplined than to be disciplined after being relaxed. |
Thus the regimented discipline in the present system may actually be a half-blessing, especially when seeing how big the student population and how much catch-up is to be done.
Having said that, the system may need to examine how to inculcate a more experimental way of looking at things and/or equip the students with new skills relevant for a changing society after they come out from college. It could be a good time to do so, since society is also changing and getting more receptive to new ideas.
If there isn't a free slot to insert the new modules, or more probably if there aren't appropriately trained instructors at the moment for them, then let there be special programs graduates can attend after they have come out from college. Tie those programs to something like pre-career orientation so that you don't just spend time queuing up to fill job application forms, but also get into clusters with others to take some special classes conducted by the private sector on a variety of topics for a limited period of time before the first job.
There should also be continuity; graduates should have alumni records and those records should be searchable on an internet portal which connects to job placements, skills matching and work interest or area of expertise of level of experience throughout the life of the person. So you will get something which is one huge national human capital database that contains information on a person's career, skills and even hobby progressions. Depending how one slices and dices that database, one can build all sorts of mappings for national down to district-level planning on human resource development. It doesn't just have to function as a massive information store but also in other areas - to enable each person to benchmark his own performance locally, and then by extension globally, with the gaps providing ideas for new businesses to close them. It can also act like a handy linkedin, facebook or some other socialising, networking, business partnering, even emplacement facility.
Once you have this model in place, the next step is to add things to it which people can extract to fill the gap between college world and real world; for instance they may post as in this forum a problem they are facing at work and other people can put in suggestions for improvement or even share some of their own insights; i am sure this is already done in many of the local electronic fora but it looks somewhat molecularised and could do with a bit more coherence and content. The portal organizers can input some of those content where it helps society and nation, and then the whole thing also gets discussed on tv and in the press so that those who don't login can at least tune in to get audio-visuals of the discussions and classes, something you can of course do in portals too.
The discipline imbibed in class can be turned around from something impeding as one transits into working life to something accelerative in a certain direction in society. You can even have a program like 'Making the Transition to Working Life : A Primer for Graduates' , or even 'How Do I Develop My Own Special Personality in A Big World', and turn those into some reality show just for fun and discussion, as an example.
The underlying objective is: value-system, retained; discipline, transformed; new skills, added; special qualities-developed to ride with changes; and everything, coordinated to some primacy aligned to some objectives propelled to some visions.
China has not yet fully realized the incredible potential and power of her human capital; once all become connected, the critical mass will dwarf anything else on this planet - for its depth, breadth, capacity for neural networking and other intrinsic characteristics.