College education adds to the critical employment potential of countries, so this should be an opportunity for education to create an entrepreneurial culture among graduates.
Thanks +The Boston Globe of Sunday January 6th 2013. As a man recently from Africa, I have met graduates on the Streets of Lagos, Cape Town, Kampala, Nairobi, Dar-es-Salaam, Addis-Ababa and Brazzaville. I have also met non-graduates in various categories. These were functionally engaged in businesses termed as 'informal-sector'. They were the City backbone and had the best places for cheaper food, transport and businesses spaces. Many employed graduates. That is in Africa.
Education provides skills and gives many opportunities to get into the formal sector. Here they enjoy job security, salaries, trappings and means to improve on themselves further. They pursue their goals with confidence and command respect in society. Education gives one the possibility to earn sums of money commensurate to their levels of learning and skills.
The labour market: What is that? Careers? Buildings with offices? Larger storied buildings with big notices calling on applicants to fill in short and long term job contracts?
In Africa one meet graduates making life changing decisions such as taking up jobs in; artisanry, masonry, construction, manufacturing, sales, indigenous herb pharmaceuticals, transport, running video-music kiosks, second-hand trade, teaching, music, dance and drama and modelling. One is also seeing many staying at their parents' homes.
In USA, we see many graduates taking up jobs as; waiters, waitresses, sales-persons, manufacturing, construction, internet-based businesses, car detailing and call center operatives even when they may be BA English Major or Chemical Engineers with Summa Cum Laude. There is a lesson to learn here. There is need to equip all students with entrepreneur skills so that they can adjust to the changes of life as well transition prevail within the existing market.
A quick look into who constitute this change and what degrees they carry reveals that science and liberal liberal Arts graduates need entrepreneur skills alike.
In Africa and other parts of the world, some advice is called for to craft these degrees to have a business/entrepreneurial component attached to them:
1. Governments have long promised loans to students but the loans are long coming.
2. Students should use their time at Universities to 'sandwich' into shorter certificate courses which teach targeted skills.
3. Cooperatives and Communities where members come together to engage in say, agricultural production should be promoted.
4. The idea of training young people (whether graduates or not) in job-related skills and Technical skills should also be a priority and an addition to all Degrees.
5. The Rural-City migration is following a pattern of social amenities which are better. Governments should make rural communities equally amenable. Jobs will follow this.