What does globalization mean to kids who dropout of school without skills necessary to participate in the global economy?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

As a result of increasing globalization, students who dropout without skills necessary to participate in the global economy are placed at a tremendous disadvantage.

Students who drop out of high school are placed at a significant disadvantage in a globalized world for a couple of reasons.  One reason is a changing job landscape.  Prior to globalization, there were more jobs in industrialized settings that required a lower level of skills. Manufacturing jobs and industrial labor were readily available.  However, globalization has altered that reality:

Jobs that require routine manual or cognitive tasks are rapidly being taken over by computers or lower-paid workers in other countries, while jobs that require higher levels of education and more sophisticated problem-solving and communication skills are in increasingly high demand. 

Technology and outsourcing jobs that require a lower level of skills to different parts of the world have placed high school dropouts at a higher risk of failure in a globalized economy.

Another reality of globalization is that students are competing against more people.  Globalization has increased the candidate pool for work.  The global economy means that employers who want to find the best candidate can find candidates from anywhere. This means that students have to possess more skills than before to distinguish themselves from their global counterparts:  "American students today are therefore competing not just with students in the city or state next door but with students in Singapore and Shanghai, Bangalore and Helsinki."  Students who drop out of school move to the bottom even quicker than before because there are more qualified candidates from around the world.

When students drop out of school in a globalized world, they are placed at a brutal disadvantage.  What these students could do, others around the world are doing for a cheaper rate, making them expendable in the global economy. At the same time, the jobs that are available require skills that go beyond a high school education.  Globalization has created a system where education is essential for success. The more people have, the more economically viable they are.  The result is that students who drop out of school lack the skills needed to compete in a globalized world.

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