Empowering Lifelong Learning
At That Can Be Me, Inc. we believe that every individual should be a lifelong learner with the self-confidence to reach his or her full potential. In too many situations, individuals’ educations are cut short and the constraints of life and work limit their ability to see themselves as learners. Even individuals who have had access to rich educational opportunities often underestimate their power and ability to use their own learning to shape the environments in which they live and work, thereby limiting their personal and professional growth.
We aspire to enable and empower people to embark on a journey of lifelong learning by creating communities of learners in which inspiring role models help them to believe “that can be me.” But the role models are not necessarily people with more education or higher positions – role models in this case are people with similar backgrounds who have already begun this journey, and whose insights and experiences enable others to see the possibilities that learning provides for them.
Lifelong learning means more than just an ability to learn new things, it means making meaningful contributions of knowledge and insights that others can use. By creating communities of learners who can build on each other’s ideas, we can develop a population with the insights and skills necessary to be resilient, thriving members of an informed society. In short, we believe that every individual – regardless of personal situation – should believe “that can be me:” that he or she can be a lifelong learner who contributes to his or her community and to society at large.
To make this dream a reality, we have created a unique workplace learning program, building on a set of successful pilots:
Books@Work is a rigorous college level program pairing liberal arts colleges with employers, bringing professor-led seminars to the workplace to enable critical thinking, collaboration, creativity and effective communication. Participants learn from each other as well as from their professors. Professors who have experienced the program have shared how much they have learned by re-interpreting familiar texts through the eyes of participants with diverse life experiences. Books@Work enables the development of a learning community among employed adults who have left the traditional education system but who can be inspired to think critically about important human themes they encounter every day. They learn to collaborate with peers at a deeper level, develop a voice in shaping an innovative and exciting workplace for themselves and for others, and have the confidence to contribute to the broader issues of society.
Through real and virtual networks maintained and developed by That Can Be Me, Books@Work permits learning experiences to be developed locally, tailored to the needs of specific individual learners, while contributing broadly to meaningful societal impact. By encouraging the very personal act of learning to inform the learning of others through a broad, active and disseminated network, That Can Be Me strives to reshape the way people use and contribute to effective “best practice” while helping them to contribute to more sustainable and humanly accessible “scale.”
For more information about Books@Work, click here.