02:22:31 pm on October 12, 2006 |
by MOHD ALIFF MOHD NOR
Appeared in OPINION section, The Star 9th October 2006
RECENTLY, Malaysian university students seem to have more difficulties finding a job. In my opinion, our market has plenty of jobs waiting for fresh graduates.
What our students do not have are the many skills required by employers.
According to Natrah Ahmad Fadil, the education consultant of the Time Publishing Company, university students are not well versed in communication and writing (English) skills and they are not critical in thought.
The consultant also mentioned that although the Government has taken steps to improve English language levels among primary and secondary students by teaching Science and Mathematics in English, our people are still behind in the universal language compared to Singapore.
Natrah shared her experience when she met a fresh graduate who returned from the United States specialising in Mechatronics (Engineering) last year. However, the way she communicates in English is not up to expectations. Another example is a 20-year-old man who made many grammatical errors in his application for sponsorship.
These examples are enough to open our eyes about our “future leaders” who are still weak in English in terms of communication and writing.
Critical thinking is needed to bridge the gap between the past and current subjects. Many of our university students do not instil this kind of thinking.
Whatever their chosen field of specialisation, students must be well versed in all the subjects covered from start to end.
Nowadays, employers are interested in hiring those who can relate the old with the latest.
Natrah added that most of the students could not do this although they were taught because they learnt only to pass, not to acquire knowledge for use in their future.
The jobs are out there for our graduates to grab. They need to find out what skills they lack and understand what employers expect from them.