By Olubusuyi Adenipekun
Beginning from July this year, an orientation programme for university students as well as participants in the National Youths Service Corps on how to fit into the realities of the labour marketÂ is to commence in the nationâ€™s tertiary institutions.
The programme, which is being anchored by the centre for African Renaissance Reformation and Development (CEFARRD), a non-governmental organisation, will take off at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Yaba College of Technology as well as selected NYSC orientationÂ Â camps across the country after which it will be taken to other universities in the country.
The Director of CEFARRD, Dr. Chidi Okpaluba disclosed this in Lagos. According to him, the need for the youth empowerment programme became compelling given the high number of unemployed graduates being turned out by the nationâ€™s tertiary institutions on yearly basis, adding that these graduates only received education that prepared them to look for white-collar job instead of being self-reliant.
According to him, Life After School programme will instill entrepreneurship spirit in the students of Nigerian tertiary institutions.
Okpaluba said: â€œLife After School will create a bridge between the information given out to the students in school and the reality of the labour market, helping youths transit with least stress from unemployment and its associated hopelessness to entrepreneurship; from poverty to wealth creation, from helplessness to confident leadership. It is designed to unleash the ingenuity in our youths and give them the tools to use in crealing the life of their dreams.â€
Apart from going from one university to the other, CEFARRD intends to achieve meaningful orientation of university students by establishing Youth and Dreams Leadership Forum in universities which will provide a platform for opinion leaders in tutoring and mentoring of the students.
Through this mentoring, says Okpaluba, youths will have the opportunity of total self discovery and the development of a compelling personal mission statement, adding that they will learn how to set goals and acheive them, they will learn the secrets of seamless interpersonal relationships, learn how to convert ideas to wealth and the secret of being world class organisations, and that they will learn how to use the knowledge acquired in school to improve the quality of their lives.
He says further of the opportunities awaiting youths who participate in the programme: â€œThe programme is expected to help participating youths toward developing a positive self esteem, the youths will learn the benefits that trail originality, they will be taught the art of adding value to whatever they do and the youths will become bold, daring and ready to confront challenges.
He explained that the idea and concept of the programme is geared toward a re-orientation of youths and young school leavers such that they embrace the attitude and culture of creativity and entrepreneurship, leadership and the zeal for pursuing and attaining success in all their endeavours, adding that the initiative will expose them to the universal principles of life long success, will ignite in them the spirit of excellence and genuine greatness and will tame unemployment by creating world-class entrepreneurs out of the youths.