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Employers, consider fresh graduates

By Vision Reporter

Added 12th April 2006 03:00 AM

LAST month the country witnessed yet another magnificent graduation ceremony at Makerere University, an indication of socio-economic growth. However, I have keenly read advertisements for jobs and the trend employers have opted for is unfortunate.

LAST month the country witnessed yet another magnificent graduation ceremony at Makerere University, an indication of socio-economic growth. However, I have keenly read advertisements for jobs and the trend employers have opted for is unfortunate.

Deogratias Bukenya

LAST month the country witnessed yet another magnificent graduation ceremony at Makerere University, an indication of socio-economic growth. However, I have keenly read advertisements for jobs and the trend employers have opted for is unfortunate.

It is irritating to find that for one to be considered eligible for any job, he or she must have a working experience of three-ten years. This policy or tendency does not solve the problem of escalating unemployment. It only facilitates those who are already employed to change jobs. Thus the few jobs available are the monopoly of those with experience. How did they get the experience? Surely they must have had a first employer who did not mind about experience.

I shed more tears on finding out that the majority of job opportunities are advertised by government organisations, particularly ministries and local governments. This implies that those who are not employed — the fresh graduates — are unwanted as far as the government is concerned, no matter that the state spends a lot of tax payers’ money sponsoring some of them at universities and other tertiary institutions. Where can one get experience when he or she is not given an opportunity to prove his or her worth? Where do employers expect a graduate who has been in school since childhood to get the three-ten years’ working experience? For how long must we plead for equal opportunities in our society?

If employers feel that experience is a must, then the government should establish public institutions where fresh graduates can acquire the experience at subsidised cost and be eligible for jobs.

Many graduands have had no reason to organise graduation parties because they are not certain about getting employed. Some feel the government, which they applaud for sponsoring them, has abandoned them at a critical moment when they need it most.

What exactly do employers mean by experience? At Makerere and other tertiary institutions, students are taught the basic knowledge and skills required in different fields. Isn’t that fair enough to enable fresh graduates favourably compete with those already working?

I therefore appeal to employers to boldly come out and clarify on what exactly they mean by experience. Imagine after spending 16-20 years struggling for an academic qualification and after acquiring your transcript, you are not even qualified to apply for any job!

The writer is a student of Makerere University

Employers, consider fresh graduates

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