Donna Deeds' professional education model speech discusses alternative methods. As an educator and principal, Deeds found that there was a disconnect between the language of education and the language of industry. In an effort to remedy this divide, Deeds embarked on a project called 'CAPS' (Center for Advanced Professional Studies.) The goal of the project was to unite business professionals and students. Essentially, students would spend half their time in a traditional educational setting, and the other half in an industry they were interested in pursuing.
Unfortunately, no businesses were volunteering their services to the project, prompting Deeds to flip the question; rather than asking businesses to assist the education system, they asked business how they could better assist them. In other words, what were they missing from the graduates they were hiring? What skills would they like to see more grads possess? Were they receiving enough candidates to fill their positions? By modifying the core question, the CAPS project was able to open up a dialogue with business. The project has since grown to include a staggering 240 business partners that help craft an authentic learning experience for youth grounded in real world professional experience.