A Word of Advice to Graduands and Varsity Rectors

By Ali Twaha 

A number of candidates will be graduating this year in various disciplines from different universities country wide. A total of 12,616 have already been passed out by the nation’s oldest university, Makerere and a mammoth more awaits their academic accolades through the week.

This is the season for guardians, students and instructors to wear big smiles especially when the results are overwhelmingly impressing.  After a period of 3-4 years of struggle, characterized by payments of huge sums of tuition fees coupled with accommodation costs, course work…you name it. Sponsors will breathe a sigh of relief to reach this “finishing line.” Graduation is a one way permit to face the world. University is a place where one has to learn how the world works globally. The piece of paper you receive today or tomorrow is a representation of 3-5 years of hard work. It is, therefore, paramount to remember, that there are other 30,000 or more about to receive that same piece of paper. 

As you enter into the job jungle where only the fittest survive, it is yet another hustle. Ironically, a number of graduates receive that piece of paper but instead some end up riding boda bodas, or become barbers, hawkers among menial trades.

This is so basically because our job market often finds new gradates not up to the minimum standards. Chris Obore, an investigative journalist with Daily Monitor, said in a recent radio talk show on Kfm that “We don’t have universities in this country. Some of them are masqueraders but are just typical examples of high schools.” He added that “employers normally claim our university graduates are normally half backed.”

Frequently, employers tend not to offer opportunities to fresh college students because they don’t want to face the bother of training them on the job. This, they feel is a job of the universities.

University chancellors/rectors/principals should try initiate more practical programs to enhance students’ skills to broaden their opportunities of not only securing jobs but create them as well.

Ali Twaha is a 2nd year student of Mass Communication 
Islamic University In Uganda



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