Understanding technology is a critical life skill that every student needs to embrace at an early age. But even more important than understanding the technology of today is your ability to evolve along with technology.
Experts say that 40-60% of jobs that will be available in 20 years haven’t even been created.
What started as a calculator morphed into a computer and now fits in your pocket.
Understanding and evolving with Digital Technology is a skill that young and old need to champion.
WHAT IS DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY?
Digital technology often translates as a machine that helps connect people with the use of information. Most individuals commonly link computers and the internet with digital technology. Common examples of digital technology include websites, smartphones, televisions, ATMs, clocks, social media, and streaming platforms.
Digital technology continues to evolve and common household appliances and tools continue to evolve.
Digital technology uses scientific knowledge and creates functional ways to complete tasks.
DISCUSSION WITH DIGITAL MARKETING SPECIALIST ERIC HERSEY
There might not be an industry more connected to digital technology than web design and internet marketing. Eric Hersey, Eric Hersey Web Design in Wheeling, West Virginia, understands how technology has evolved over the years. Eric explains how his early embrace of technology has helped him develop an online profile that attracted employers and future clients.
Eric is very passionate about learning at an early age and really making digital technology a core life skill. Eric Hersey discusses the following:
- Essential software to learn for secondary education
- How you can stay up-to-date with emerging technology
- The ability to demonstrate technology skills to potential employers
- Potential risks for youth and employees when using technology
Watch and listen to our discussion with Web Designer and Technology Enthusiast Eric Hersey.
WHAT SOFTWARE DO YOU SEE AS ESSENTIAL FOR STUDENTS PREPARING FOR SECONDARY EDUCATION OR ENTERING A WORK ENVIRONMENT?
It’s important for all students to develop some competency in word processing platforms and spreadsheets. Whether you are creating a resume or doing some simple math, understanding how you can use programs like Microsoft Word/Google Docs and Microsoft Excel/Google Sheets is necessary for most jobs.
Understanding the basics of creating, opening, and saving documents is necessary. There are thousands of tutorials available on YouTube (or paid video training platforms) that will explain the very basics and/or train you how to become an expert.
Although you should embrace and learn how to spell and proper grammar, using tools like Grammarly can help save you time and more importantly refresh your skills. Websites like Hemingwayapp.com can review your writing in real-time and fix many of your common errors.
HOW CAN A STUDENT DEMONSTRATE DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY SKILLS WHEN TRYING TO GAIN ENTRY TO THE WORKFORCE?
It’s important that you can show the skill of problem-solving and critical thinking.
Most employers are looking for those who can be independent and fix issues. It could be as simple as defusing an angry customer or as complex as diagnosing an issue with an electric vehicle. The ability to problem solve is a life skill that is necessary for all careers.
It’s difficult to show your ability to problem solve during an interview but you can certainly verbalize how you solve problems.
During the conversation, discuss how you stay up to date with technology. Mention that you listen to podcasts, read blogs, or watch videos on specific topics. Showcase that you are a forever learner and how you embrace the newest technology and trends to advance your skills.
Most importantly, think of exact situations where you used technology to solve a problem. Be specific in your answer and explain exactly how you used technology to solve your issue. If you used a YouTube video to learn how to change your car’s oil, you’ll likely be able to find a solution online for any potential work problem.
WHAT ARE THE RISK FACTORS OF USING DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY?
The internet is not all bad.
Many individuals hear the horror stories of employees being fired for making comments or being caught in lies. Yes, be careful what you post online. Even though you have the power to delete your comments, screen captures from others can make your content live forever.
But you can also use digital technology to your advantage. Post positive stories. Show your real personality and what you enjoy.
Employers will look you up on the internet. Maybe you can win them over with your content before you ever even come in for an interview.
DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY IS EVOLVING SO QUICKLY. HOW CAN YOU STAY UP TO DATE IF YOU AREN’T PROFICIENT OR DON’T LOVE TECHNOLOGY?
Learning about new technology is easy if you have a hobby.
Hobbies are activities done regularly for pleasure. These are items that you enjoy doing.
Imagine if you could link learning something new that advances your ability with your hobby? This is what Eric Hersey did to learn how to make websites.
Eric enjoyed Fantasy Football. He used this hobby as a way to force himself to learn new skills. He discovered podcasts (audio technology) so he could learn more about the game. He created his own website on fantasy football and discovered TeamTreehouse and LinkedIn Learning (video tutorials) when looking for development solutions.
Even when he came across difficult problems, he managed to work through the difficulties because he was powered by his hobby.
LEARN MORE ABOUT DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY
Technology will continue to evolve. Right now we are talking about Smart Devices and Voice Assistants. Who knows what we will be discussing in the future.
One thing is for certain, we will find experts in the field and gather their advice to help educate and transform our youth.
It’s important for students and youth to learn the positives and negatives of digital technology. The power of having information at your fingertips can help evolve our world and also help change someone’s life.
All Choices Matter – especially when you decide to post something on the internet or submit a resume. Did you use digital technology to help you advance? Did spell check help you fix a typo? Were you able to find directions to your job interview when you took a wrong turn?
To learn more about All Choices Matter and how we can help out your school or organization, contact us today. All Choices Matter provides expert advice, training, videos, and workforce readiness materials to help out parents, students, and teachers in our community.