This is how mentorship will boost graduate employability in Nigeria
Stutern, Nigeria’s internship marketplace has announced a partnership with Jobberman to tackle the menace of unemployment in Nigeria through internship placements.
The partnership will see Jobberman granting Stutern access to its more than 45,000 employer relationships as it intensifies the provision of internship opportunities to undergraduates, NYSC members and fresh graduates in Nigeria. “We have one focus. It is internships. Get experience, get skills, get paid,” said Taiwo Ayanleye, Co-founder of Stutern.com.
This recent move, however, might not be the panacea for unemployment in Nigeria. Unemployment has long been identified as a ticking time bomb in Nigeria and it is quite worrisome that employers claim Nigerian graduates are unemployable as a result of a lack of required skills for the present day job.
Entrepreneurship has been the popular solution to fix graduate unemployment in Nigeria. However, if entrepreneurship is the solution to unemployment, youth corp members should not add to the list of unemployed graduates after the Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development training acquired during their service programme. As such, without mentorship, even the likes of Tony Elumelu’s programme to train 10,000 African entrepreneurs in 10 years might be a right step in the wrong direction.
A realistic way out of this national problem is mentorship. In recent years, most Nigerians graduate with unemployable skills and little to no professional skills required by most corporate organizations for employment. As a result, a large percentage of graduates are unemployed every year and, thereby, continuously adding to the exponential growth of youth unemployment. This is evident from the data presented by the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS), stating the country’s unemployment rate increased to 9.9 percent in the third quarter of 2015, representing a fourth consecutive rise in these rates since the third quarter of 2014.
Mentors transfer wisdom with regards to norms, values and morals of the organization and support mentees through counselling and support. They do all of this while providing information which their mentees would, otherwise, not have been able to access. Also, mentors are helpful in shaping the lives of young, less experienced colleagues while guiding them and as well as provide opportunities for growth by identifying situations and events which contribute to enhancing the knowledge and experience of the mentee.
Graduate unemployment in Nigeria can be attributable to the fact that employee education and skills acquired are inadequate to meet the demands of modern day jobs. Sufficient skills can be adopted from the act of mentoring as a good mentor represents both an anchor and a sail.
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