Experts promote social enterprise as key stop-gap in unemployment

Academicians from International and National Universities across the globe have proposed social enterprise as key stop-gap measure to halting the high spate of graduate unemployment in the country.

The concept thrives on research to identify needs gap and providing such services in an environmentally friendly manner that did not compromise the future holdings of population yet to be born.

Professor Ernest Christian Eshun, from the Accra Technical University at a workshop to introduce the concept to selected students of the Takoradi Technical University said the project with sponsorship from the British Council in collaboration with University of Huddersfield and Bolton in United Kingdom and its local partner, Social Enterprise initiated the programme to deal with the abnormal level of unemployment in Ghana.

He said as higher education providers, it had become imperative to research the high unemployment rate among graduates as well as professing solutions in that regard.

The Professor said, “and we expect our higher education to break down the cycle because most of the youth come through higher education…Why can’t they find jobs because there is something wrong with the way we do things. And we believe we should be training their students to be social entrepreneurs.

“So, as we try to solve unemployment problems, and we do any businesses, we may end up killing society. So, we should produce programmes or projects that are socially acceptable…We are looking at businesses that will impact on society as well as individuals in society”.

He stated that the Accra Technical University with its partners would come out with curriculum to run short courses on the subject, adding that the workshop was a sensitisation and information gathering processes to feed into the development and adoption of the Social Enterprise concept into higher education across the country.

Dr Denis Hymas-Sskasi from the University of Bolton took the students through enhancing innovation entrepreneurship and encouraged them to differentiate themselves, be committed through effective communication skills, provide right leadership, creativity to lead to problem solving abilities to serve societal needs.

He said the project would run in Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya to create a culture of innovation and upscale the quality of graduates from participating institutions.

Dr Hymas-Sskasi said other components included mentorship, resource motivation and short courses to further enable students to do well in the area.

Ms Ama Darko, a Business Consultant urged them to be mindful of sustainable businesses as the world strives for zero carbon emissions.

Mr Sydney Joji Heuton, Founder of the SKY Micro Credit encouraged the students to start small and walk the talk to greatness.

He said business integrity was fundamental to the survival of every brand in the long term.

The students were encouraged to form partnerships to enable them to have improved strength from the foundational stages of the business.

They are also to have mentors and resort to the Nation Business Advisory Board for coaching and all other capacity and resource assistance.

Source: GNA

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