The paper aims at exploring the implications for university lifelong learning on transitions (and micro-transitions) and the role of adult counselling in supporting and facilitating them. These transitions are not only professional: they can refer to people entry or return to the workforce, change or progress in their careers, or leave work due to unemployment, retirement, or personal choice, but also to people who return to university as a free choice. In all these situations, University involves in significant and different opportunities adults. Transitions take place always more often in the frame of highly differentiated systems and workers have to be aware changing needs and to adapt themselves to different contexts. Today, Universities usually provide for guidance services for their students. The first objective of the paper is to reflect on what services are working and for what kind of beneficiaries. For adults, who return to University, guidance services must foresee recognition and validation of prior learning. In Italy we think that a connection between person needs and university services is not always present. It can arise from an in-depth need analysis not only with regard to person, but also, to labour market. This process requires time, competent human resources, appropriate spaces and financial investments. There is problem of sustainability. But University must change accordingly with the width and fastness of labour market and skill market evolution. All the three Universities' missions are, in different ways, all questioned by the growth of complexity, labour market crisis, lifelong and lifewide learning implications. University should be able to tackle career changes and transitions, to take into account the life cycle of learning and skills and to develop a useful process to the professional who needs to build further projects for their future. Another aspect that we will consider is that University is lacking with regard to skill ecology and to the activities that can empower workers to ameliorate their position in the labour market. These needs and changes require an institutional involvement of Universities, especially in terms of third mission. Two experiences will be presented. A research of Department of Education – University Genoa on "Definition of a model for recognition, integration and validation of skills acquired in professional and training paths". It was funded by the Liguria Region and a large distribution company and a consortium of social cooperatives were involved with their workers. A Guidance Project of the Department of Education – University Roma Tre. It has been funded by the Lazio Region to the PORTA FUTURO RETE UNIVERSITA'. Different guidance activities took place: a "reduced" pathway of Bilan des compétences; a guidance pathway; a small project of "alternanza scuola lavoro". Targets have been different: students, unemployed people and workers. Both projects could take place thanks to external public resources. Conclusions in terms of questions that require answers: What does it mean for Universities? This kind of initiatives are or not embedded in their institutional role? And if the answer is yes, what's the reason for which they must be funded only with external resources? Is the Third Mission a relevant activity for Universities only if it's ?
Palumbo, M., Proietti, E. (2018). Adult lifelong learning and counselling in life transitions: challenges for universities. In eucen Studies eJournal of University Lifelong Learning. eucen Conference and Autumn Seminar 2018 Vol 2 No 01 (pp.21-26). eucen Electronic Press.