Our higher institutions produce numerous graduates repeatedly every year. With high hopes and great expectations they are sent off into the labour market (or is it favour market?), to find a job. At this point, reality begins to dawn on (most of) them. They go to all kinds of places and do all kinds of things to try and secure a job. They now start understanding why Chike, Miriam and Bayo have been at home, two years now since they graduated. Confusion and frustration sets in, and the hopes continually thins out.
“The government is supposed to provide jobs for us”, I overheard someone say to his friend as he lamented over not being able to find himself a job. Our government over the years lost focus on putting structures, institutions and mechanisms to see to it that the many graduates can find a job immediately or shortly after graduating. The entrepreneurs should have really helped out (this is not to undermine how much they have done and are doing in this regards), but are giving-up daily, They would have done better if only they had a better enabling environment to operate. Many have come and gone with much regrets over why they started in the first place.
Small and Medium scale Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria are said to create over 95% of the jobs in Nigeria. The unemployment rate is so high, so much so that over 50% of our youths are unemployed. Little wonder why the crime rate in the land is high. It is election period and you don’t need to be told how our politicians will capitalise on the joblessness of the youths to carry out their dirty jobs… if only (most of) our youths are gainfully employed. See eeh, truly, truly, an idle mind is the devils workshop.
In trying to curb the rate of unemployment, the Federal Government, through the ministry of finance thought it wise to introduce the Graduate Internship Scheme (GIS) as part of priority areas of SURE-P (Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme). Though their target at this stage of the programme is abysmal, just 50,000 Nigerian youth, I would like to believe it would increase with time.
Have you heard of any of this before? Did you think it was a scram or…? Or maybe the government in power is trying to gain cheap political points as the elections draws nigh. I probably did not think too far from these myself, but my curious mind decided to give it a try, after all, it didn't require me to pay a dime to be part of the GIS.
I registered for the GIS in November 2014, and was invited for a Job fair by December that same year, where I was attached to firm (Beautiful Ideas Limited) as an intern. By 25th January, 2015 I was advised to resume work, which I did on the 2nd of February, and I have been on that job since then. If I wasn't doing this job, I imagine what I would have really been doing from the day I resumed till now (maybe blogging all day…lol). I have learnt new skills, gained new experiences and expanded my network and I am just starting. Now my visions on ideas and opportunities are getting clearer. Beyond setting the intern up with an employer, the GIS organises trainings periodically and is also responsible for a monthly stipends given to the intern for a period of 12 months the Scheme lasts. Its not bad at all o.
Somehow, GIS has become a way out for many unemployed graduate. For the period they are part of the scheme, they are given the opportunity to improve themselves and have a period of experience they can boast of and improve their CVs. More interestingly is that those interns that aim at becoming entrepreneurs, are equipped psychologically and otherwise for this purpose too. Those who would work for people and the government eventually, are taught work ethics, etiquette and skills… and I must stress again: the interns are still paid for it monthly. Why not give it a trial and see for yourself, after-all, na our national cake money dem take dey do everything.
|GIS Interns after a training after an orientation and employability skills training (can you see me?)|
Guy, no dull o. To be part of the Graduate Internship Scheme, click on the link: GIS Intern and register.