Reverend Professor Emmanuel Addow Obeng, President of the Presbyterian University College (PUC) has observed that, effective career guidance programmes in secondary and tertiary level of education in the country could help reduce graduate unemployment.
According to him, lack of effective career guidance and development programmes to provide the needed information about the job market and direction to graduates before stepping out into the world of work was a factor in the high rate of graduate unemployment.
He noted that, aside that, there was a mismatch between the output of universities and the labour needs of industry because most of the private universities were offering similar programmes leading to over production of graduates in some of the programmes.
Professor Addow Obeng, the new President of the PUC, was speaking at the 8th congregation of the school for 667 people who graduated with bachelor’s degrees from nine programmes at Abetifi in the Kwahu East District.
He emphasized the importance of the career guidance and counseling in ensuring that graduates chose the right programmes and exhibited excellence particularly good communication skills and critical thinking to become relevant for the job market.
The President disclosed that, many employers had pointed out the unrealistic expectations and demands of young employees in the face of the apparent lack of requisite skills and experience and called on higher institutions to invest in that area to help address graduate unemployment.
He said PUC being mindful of that critical component in higher education had set up Life Values Promotion Centre through its chaplaincy.
Ms Stella Okoh, an alumni and guest speaker, urge graduates to expand their horizon by using the skills acquired to create their own jobs rather than relying on government or the private sector as a means to reduce graduate unemployment.
She also urge universities to partner corporate institutions to offer regular internship and attachments to their students so that by the time they left school, they would have had the practical experience to guide them in seeking for jobs.