We need relevant education; an education tailored to one’s desired career. Students are taking courses that have nothing to do with their major areas of study.
I am proposing a new system of education in which companies/firms and educators come together and develop new curricula. A company decides how many employees it will need in the next two or three years. It then approaches the educational institution with a proposal to hire 20 students as student-trainees.
The students will only take those courses relevant to that company’s employment standards. The student will then get hands-on training with the company three times a week and earn a salary. Upon fulfilling all the education requirements, he/she will be hired permanently.
This way, the students will not waste time taking courses that are irrelevant to their field of study. Allow me to explain further.
Let’s say I want to be a journalist and I am enrolled in the School of Journalism. The New Times approaches me and asks me if I would like to work for them, to which I reply with a thunderous yes. The New Times then approaches the school and tells the administration that I am hired as a student-trainee. TNT then tells the school officials what courses it wants covered and nothing else.
I take those courses, and every Monday, Wednesday and Friday I visit TNT newspaper for hands-on training to enhance my classroom lessons. The New Times newspaper then pays me some money. After graduating from the School of Journalism, TNT employs me on a permanent basis. TNT will save money as it won’t have to train me.
I will graduate faster because I will not have taken courses that have nothing to do with journalism. I will go straight to employment and don’t have to look for a job like it is today when graduates have to spend up to a year or longer seeking employment.
Michael Rwiyamilira, USA
Reaction to Sam Kebongo’s commentary, “Re-think the relevance of University Education,” (The New Times, March 09)
Firms, educators should partner to develop curricula