Sunday, 29 June 2014

Do You Think There Is A Gap Between The Skills of Graduates And The Demand In The Industry?

If so, we are at the same page and worth spending time with me!

Annually, a lot of young work force seeking employment opportunities are produced in many institutions but unable or takes more time to get employed because of minor skill gaps to the demands in the industries. Similarly, industries generate lots of vacant positions to be filled with new entrants which quite significant of them are folded or occupied with expensive expat alternatives for fear of lack of skill.

Recently, youngsters are taking advantage of the IT technology and trying to update themselves to the demand in the industry, yet a lot remains undone to let the two feed each other more smoothly.

What has normally been practiced in the institutions is to send the graduates to industries at the end of their graduating seasons and let them practice for few months. Practically, this is quite a limited time to acquire a new skill and at the same time graduates are rather at a time when they are tired of studying anymore and keen to hold their degrees and pay no much attention to it.

In my observations in the institutions and few experiences later in the industries, what I learn is a bit traditional approach in the industries and much of a theory in the institutions both of whom are bounded within their own circles. The most important thing for the nation however; is to integrate the better of the two for a better future of all. An industry which is not supported by researches and developments reaches nowhere and an institution which is disconnected from reality on the ground benefits no one. Genuinely speaking, we work on and probably are the best on the theory side but it doesn’t help us as it should be unless we balance the knowledge exposing ourselves to the other side of the practical world too.

So, if you don’t mind, here are my humble suggestions, and note that I am talking about the case in Ethiopia.

  • The instructors in the institutions should give advice to their students about their careers not only from theoretical but also practical experiences on the ground. To do that they need necessarily get the exposure of the industry themselves in any way possible. They should exercise to come out of their compound and explore what is practically going on outside in the industries.
  • It is not easy for institutions to train graduates for a specific skill however. So, industries should learn to invest on short time training programs tailored to their own skill demand. In the mean time, they should also open their doors for apprentice programs conducted by institutions every year if they need to match their expectations.
  • It also adds a significant value if industry professionals, accommodating their pedagogical limitations, are invited and share their experiences to the youngsters in the institutions on some preprogrammed occasions.

May be, you say who a hell are you to say that. But I can tell you, it takes me a lot of effort and time, which some were not necessary, to find my way forward on my own. I want to see youngsters get employed faster and start their careers as earliest so that they have so much time for success. Plus, the more the industry grows, the more the expense for expat skill accumulates, the more the challenge for the industry in particular and the economy in general which I don’t  want to see either.