Are universities in Nigeria preparing students with substantial skills for getting hired by employers? The answer can be quite negative, yet that is only the stark reality. As former Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan, Professor Olufemi Bamiro points out, “Universities need to equip their students with the necessary competencies. Universities while trying to give quality education to the students and making sure that they have employability attributes, must be aware of the external factor and labour market regulations, democracy and structure of the economy and considering the overall economy situation of the country. Good academic qualifications are no longer enough for employability. Graduates need to also have other attributes which they call soft skills. Graduates can no longer expect to be employed in just one sector through their professional life. They will need to be impacted with skills that will make them to adapt to different situation. Some graduates do not know how to write application letters even some use internet English and short hand is not good.”
How to Deal with It?
This is indeed a problem that many developing nations like Nigeria face. Conventional university education is grossly focused on bringing excellence in academic knowledge. Employment-centric curriculum is something that is prominently absent in Nigerian education.
Now, how would Nigerian youth deal with this? A very simple question having a complex answer, Nigeria must have to make extensive use of open educational resources that allow learners getting real-life working experience parallel to their academic knowledge.
One of the most prominent benefits with globalisation is number of international universities and affiliated course providers flocking around many underdeveloped nations like Nigeria to offer online courses. Nigerian youth must take the advantages of such way of learning where flexibility of online courses allow them to enjoy anytime-anywhere studying with simple gadgets like tablets or laptops, with an internet connection. The real advantage with this flexibility of online learning what students can easily turn in favour of them is the opportunity for real-industry involvement parallel to their theoretical knowledge accumulation.
Involvement in Industry whilst Studying
So, with online university courses Nigerian youth can augment their academic proficiencies alongside their involvements in relevant industries to get practical skill-based efficiencies. Thus, they can achieve a combination of knowledge that helps them develop both theoretical concepts on any subject and applied aspects of those theories.
This is what can only save Nigerian youth from the engulfing doom of unemployment. Employers today prefer those candidates who have prior industrial exposure, and this can only be achieved through the flexible, easy-affordable online learning model. To deal with unemployment problem among Nigerian youth Government there should also encourage people for taking benefits of online education and make their job prospect really lucrative.
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