The 5 Best Ways in Which Upskilling Benefited These Emeritus Learners

The 5 Best Ways in Which Upskilling Benefited These Emeritus Learners | Learner Stories | Emeritus

According to a 2023 World Economic Forum-PwC Report on global talent, “skill-first” is currently the most popular hiring trend for public and private sector organizations. It involves focusing on a candidate’s skills and not just their degree or educational background while hiring. As a matter of fact, this skill-first approach helps organizations tackle increasing skills gaps. In order to dive deeper into why upskilling is important, let us analyze these five Emeritus learner stories discussed below.

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5 Reasons Why Upskilling is Important

1. Rebuilding Your Career

Learner: Olena Zhyhalo

Program Pursued: Digital Marketing Intensive

University: Columbia Business School

Duration of Program: 6 months

Olena Zhyhalo, a Ukrainian war survivor, was living a happy life with her family before the war broke out. When Zhyhalo moved to the Czech Republic from Ukraine in 2022, she continued her job as a remote SEO team lead in Ukraine. However, higher taxes and other expenses in the Czech Republic required her to take up freelance roles to sustain her family. It was then that she realized the marketing skill gaps she needed to fill to adapt to the market trends in the new country.

Zhyhalo applied to the Ukraine Scholarship Program and became an Emeritus learner. An online Digital Marketing Intensive course from the Columbia Business School through Emeritus taught her new-age skills like strategy building, critical thinking, presentation, and time management. Even amidst the chaos of the war, she prioritized learning and upskilling, which led her to reshape her career. Delve into Zhyhalo’s complete journey here to understand why upskilling is important and how it can rebuild your career.

ALSO READ: Lifelong Learning is the New Normal. Here’s How You Benefit From it

2. Growing Amidst Uncertainty 

Learner: Vladyslav Honcharuk

Program Pursued: MIT X PRO’s Professional Certificate in Data Engineering

University: Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

Duration of Program: 6 months

The journey of Vladyslav Honcharuk, one of Emeritus’ youngest learners, is the best example of why upskilling is important, especially during uncertainty. Honcharuk’s resilience and passion for upskilling with an Emeritus Scholarship have played a vital role in transforming his career.

During the pandemic, Honcharuk was pursuing his interest in Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) by attending scientific conferences and volunteering at various organizations. He had also enrolled for a bachelor’s degree at the University of Kyiv.

However, when he moved out of Kyiv to a different city because of the Ukraine–Russia war, he wanted to make the most of his time by improving his skills. He therefore enrolled in the MIT X PRO’s Data Engineering Course whose curriculum aligned with his interests. The course taught him advanced data engineering concepts like implementing algorithms and managing big data, modern technology, and data engineering tools. Upskilling led Honcharuk to build a strong career path even during uncertainty. You can read about his complete journey here.

3. Bridging the Gap Between Intellectual Understanding and Practice

Learner: Frank P. Fulco

Program Pursued: Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing

University: Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management 

Duration of Program: 6 months

Learning has nothing to do with age. Frank P. Fulco, the CEO of Cosmetologists Chicago & America’s Beauty Show, is the epitome of why upskilling is important and why professionals should focus on lifelong learning.  At the age of 53, Fulco already had over 30 years of experience in the consumer products industry. However, like several other leaders across the country, he too, grappled with the issue of adapting to and integrating digital transformation within his organization during the pandemic. Soon enough, he turned to Emeritus to upskill by enrolling in Kellogg School of Management’s online digital marketing course. 

One of Fulco’s biggest strengths as a leader is self-awareness. Despite the decades of experience he brought to the table, he acknowledged that he needed to upskill to lead his team. In his words, he and his team could either “evolve or perish from this challenge”.

Kellogg’s online executive program allowed Fulco to transition from a traditional marketer to a digital marketer. The program bridged the gap between theoretical knowledge of digital marketing tools and implementing them to drive value. In fact, Fulco evolved his capstone project on the digital transformation process during the Kellogg program into an effective digital marketing strategy for his organization. Learn all about Frank Fulco’s journey here.

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4. Thriving in a Fast-Paced Landscape

Learner: Camila Campos

Program Pursued: Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing

University: Imperial College Business School

Duration of Program: 21 weeks

The rapid growth of digital transformation during the pandemic has created intense competition in the market. This is why upskilling is important for modern professionals. Camila Campos’ story is no different: A native of Argentina, Campos has been a fashion enthusiast right from the beginning of her career, which led her to become an assistant fashion stylist at Clarin and then a wholesale and e-commerce coordinator at Renli Su, a popular clothing brand in London. 

However, during the pandemic, she realized the importance of digital transformation and marketing in the fashion industry. What makes Campos’ story exceptional is her persistence in learning digital marketing despite having a successful career. She pursued a Professional Certificate in Digital Marketing offered by Imperial College Business School Executive Education through Emeritus. The course taught her the data-driven aspects of digital marketing, especially the role of AI and data analytics. It enhanced her competitiveness and enabled a smooth transition from a traditional marketing role to a digital marketing role. Learn more about Camila Campos’ inspiring journey here.

5. Making a Successful Comeback After a Career Break

Learner: Madhuram Ravichandran 

Programs Pursued:  

Duration of Program: 12 months

Re-entering the workforce after a career break is a challenge, especially for women. In 2022, over one million women who left or lost their jobs during the pandemic were missing from the workforce.

However, modern professionals are not letting a career break define their resume. Madhuram Ravichandran’s journey is an ideal example of a strong career comeback. She willingly took a career break to nurture her family, but her passion for learning paved the way for her great comeback in the corporate world and she completed three professional programs within a year! As an Emeritus learner, she first enrolled in the Python Programming courses at Carnegie Mellon University. Ravichandran was determined to embrace change, strengthen her profile, and unlock new abilities. 

She then signed up for the professional certificate course in Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence at UC Berkeley through Emeritus.  Six months later, she pursued another course through Emeritus—the Applied Data Science Program at Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering.

To sum up, her unwavering commitment to learning and upskilling, as well as solving real-world problems helped her successfully re-enter the workforce. These courses helped Ravichandran build an impressive portfolio, expand her professional network, and enhance her soft skills. You can read Madhuram Ravichandran’s story here to understand in detail why upskilling is important.

ALSO READ: 8 Ways You Can Break Free from a Career Slump

Sign Up for an Emeritus Course and Discover Why Upskilling is Important 

The above stories explain that each learner has a different purpose for reskilling. However, the ultimate goal of why upskilling is important is to advance your career. Therefore, if you want a new career direction, seek better pay, transition to leadership roles, or switch careers, online courses can help you upskill and achieve your desired goal.

Write to us at content@emeritus.org

About the Author

Content Writer, Emeritus Blog
Sneha is a content marketing professional with over four years of experience in helping brands achieve their marketing goals. She crafts research-based, engaging content, making sure to showcase a bit of her creative side in every piece she writes. Sneha spends most of her time writing, reading, or drinking coffee. You will often find her practicing headstands or inversions to clear her mind.
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