The rector Joaquín Goyache defends the University as a reference in lifelong learning
April 5, 2022

Recently, Joaquin Goyache the rector of the Universidad Complutense, participated in the Foro Vocento “”Education, our future”.

He pointed, specifically in a panel on the challenges of education in which spoke about employability, degrees on demand, the integration of vocational training at the university, the over-qualification of graduates, the digital challenge and lifelong learning. On this last point, Goyache defended both its necessity, in a changing labor market, and its profitability, since “the university is now a place of constant return throughout life”.

The rector opened the session by denying the mantra that degrees are not suited to the labor market, because the university is there to “train professionals, researchers and responsible citizens, and in reality, we are neither so far from the labor market, nor can we change the way we work for a market that is so volatile”. The rector believes that super specialization can come through the master’s degrees, and that it should not be done in the bachelor’s degrees. And he also confirms that it is very difficult to adjust to a reality that is unknown how it will evolve, because degrees such as Philosophy, which “until recently, was an academic and teaching issue, is now a study in which they literally take the graduates out of our hands, and the same happens with mathematicians, who are the top graduates, so the university has to work with some bases, and not take false steps”.  

In the side of lifelong learning, the recotr Joaquín Goyache believes that lifelong learning is profitable, because graduates are going to return on a recurring basis, and that is why it is necessary for the University to lead lifelong learning. The Universidad Complutense already offers, through its Center for Lifelong Learning, dozens of diplomas, both for graduates and for those who are not graduates but want to increase their knowledge, on subjects as varied as paleontology, neuroscience, assistance in veterinary clinics, aesthetic dentistry, interior design, clinical bioethics or the design of itineraries for the social and labor insertion of people with support needs.

And about the topic “supply of degrees and over-qualification”. Joaquín Goyache believes that the problem lies more in the frustration of vocational careers. “We produce more veterinarians, for example, than Germany and France combined, due to an excess of faculties, and in the end there is not enough opportunities for everyone. As demand increases, salaries go down and some people prefer to work as cashiers in a supermarket because they earn more than being veterinarians, and that can be a problem,” says the rector.