“No, because our curriculum system is focused towards theoretical study rather than practical…” --Youthink member from Nepal, Niraj Prasad Koirala.
September 2011, Youthink posed a few questions -- through Facebook and Twitter -- on the value and role of education. While several people had positive things to say about their education, many felt that young people also need to seek practical life experiences to attain their professional goals. Tuition costs can make it harder to get an education -- especially a quality education – and although some countries offer incentives to students, a university education remains out of reach for many. Participants agreed that changes need to take place in their countries to achieve high quality education for all.
Take a look at how young people responded:
Do you think class activities and homework at your school are preparing you for a job?
Bethold Mwesy, 24 (Tanzania): “In my opinion I believe classes, class activities, and homework do prepare a person or student to have confidence and understanding of a job environment, given they fully attended and participated. Nevertheless, when it comes to job performance, personal creativity, due care and skills, objectivity, and integrity (if self-motivated) are of paramount importance. This is developed outside the classroom environment through interaction of the student and the environment whilst maintaining proper morals.”
Afolayan Kikelomo (Nigeria): “Higher education will help you in getting a job that you want but it’s obviously not a guarantee. Getting the job that you want demands key factors such as life skills aside the certificate earned in college. A good degree can serve as a springboard but other skills are needed as a complement to get one`s desired job.”
Tran Pham Thu Thuy (Vietnam): “I think education helps us to get the job easier. But it's not all we need. Because certificates can't help you through interviews. That's where our true ability is proven and a certificate is nothing more than a paper with words and a signature.”
Did you have enough opportunities for job training or internships while in school?
It became increasingly obvious that young people need to seek practical life experiences on top of their education. Sidra Kozalak (Pakistan) noted: “To some extent we are able to learn what we have to do at workplace but many schools are unable to provide the opportunity to apply the things that we have learnt.”
Is education affordable?
Najean Phillip (Trinidad): “Yes education is free. Just like in Sweden you can apply for loans to cover living costs.”
Ayange Lorbee (Nigeria): “Higher education is not totally affordable in my country because of the huge disparity between the rich and poor. The rich send their children abroad to the US, UK, Russia, China etc… to get quality education (sometimes using government scholarships),and as a result less attention is paid to quality and higher education.”
Niraj Prasad Koirala (Nepal): “No, it is not free in our case. If you go to government colleges, you have to pay less money and if you go to private college, you have to pay more money. But remember that to go to both types of colleges, either you are middle class people or high economic class people. Poorest people don't have access to high education.”
What changes would you like to see in school?
Ejlal El.amin (Sudan): “The changes i want to see: 1) : Pupils (no dropouts) Second : Teachers ( No strikes) Third : books (no clustering) Fourth: food (no malnutrition) Fifth: doors and windows ( no rain in class) and then we'll see!”
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