Ernesto Zedillo: “Employment of the Future Demands That we All Learn How to Adapt to Technology and its Possibilities”

Universidad Europea de Madrid (UEM) organized a new edition of the Youth and Jobs forum, an annual forum for employment and entrepreneurship that brings together leading economic actors to discuss the keys to success for youth employability.

This time, it was the former President of Mexico, Ernesto Zedillo, who inaugurated this year’s Youth and Jobs forum. The current presidential counselor of Laureate International Universities and director of the Center for the Study of Globalization at Yale University, gave a presentation on the growing challenges of global governance.

According to Zedillo, the future will be characterized by a technology revolution, which began during the last century. He believes that the main challenges that higher education will face are related to how institutions will adapt to changing trends in technology. 

This forum was supported by the rector of UEM, Isabel Fernández, who asked about challenges that young people face when entering the job market.  Zedillo pointed out that a good education is the key that allows them to go into the world and succeed there. “We need to teach students how to learn, to be critical, to question everything and to be constructive. You have to go to college to learn how to serve, not to be leaders,” he said.

In addition to issues related to employment, Zedillo did not hesitate to discuss topics like the progress of the world economy and other global issues. Regarding the economic crisis, Zedillo said that, for political and other varied reasons, governments have not been able to generate the necessary actions to curb the crisis. But he assured that we would see a solution, “although [he is] concerned that the transition is incurring a cost equally high in human and economic terms.”

Following the keynote from Zedillo, there was a panel discussion with entrepreneurs from different sectors, moderated by the editor of Cinco Dias, Jorge Rivera. The panel analyzed the current employment trends.

Bill Derrenger, chief executive officer and vice president for Southern Europe at Clear Channel, Javier Gándara, director general of Easy Jet for Spain, Portugal, Holland and Denmark, and Gabriel Sáez, president of Ingesport Group, all responded to questions on youth unemployment, the search for new talent, the usefulness of academic curriculum for professional development, and the motivations of young graduates. They were accompanied by Hugo Contente, vice president of HR at UEM.

The many participants at this years’ forum generally agreed that when seeking new talent, companies most often search for people with the ability to provide the best solutions to customers, those who can work well on projects, those who want to evolve with companies and have the knowledge and skill-set in the digital space.