I attended a great conference yesterday at the beautiful Kaiwen Academy here in Beijing. The conference, East Meets West is an annual event that brings Chinese counselors together for a day of information and training sessions with U.S. university representatives.
During one of the presentations three representatives from University of Chicago, Rice and Cornell University offered up some sage advice about the different types of skills universities look for in a student’s application. The topic was about Hard Skills vs. Soft Skills and it ties in closely with content from another blog of mine.
Hard Skills are those that are easily measurable – grades and test scores. Soft Skills on the other hand come from activities, sports, clubs organizations and other interests students may have. It is important to note that students do not need to show ALL of these skills nor do they expect students to have them either. The other thing that is important is that students do not need to state specifically that they have these skills, but in the process of writing essays or in evidence from Teacher and Counselor recommendations, show that they have them.
So what exactly are soft skills? Here are several that were mentioned in the presentation yesterday:
-Adaptation and Collaboration