Graduation not enough for Jobs in Africa?

(University World News)

 

While investment in university education had the highest returns in sub-Saharan Africa, producing university graduates with degrees and skills that have limited practical use in Africa’s job markets constitutes a massive waste of time and money.

 

High unemployment rates showed that universities were not producing graduates with practical and entrepreneurial skills. It also showed that graduate unemployment was highest among those without technical training and some work experience.  Universities must change their curriculum and reform it to be geared towards entrepreneurial skills and jobs in the private sector as most jobs in Africa were in the private sector.

 

Jobless graduate’s crisis

 

11 million young people will be joining the job market in sub-Saharan Africa every year for the next decade. But employers are still complaining that universities have failed to produce graduates with the right skills, leaving many graduates unemployable

 

Ways forward

 

African universities should establish linkages with the private sector, which is a growing segment of economies on the continent. It should open partnerships with the private sector which has replaced the public sector as a major labour market for graduates.

 

It was crucial for African countries to learn to create jobs in Africa. There was a need for universities to be involved in innovations that could be turned into marketable products. Africa should not develop into a consumer society of products from other continents, but countries on the continent should aim at becoming hubs of innovation.

 

University not for everyone

 

Africa’s requires not just university graduates but diploma and certificate holders from post-secondary institutions such as polytechnics, technical institutes and professional colleges. In fact most jobs in African countries exist for diplomas from technical and vocational education and training institutions and not for degrees that offer general education and not skills.

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