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Expert Drills CU Students on How to Attain Employability

An economist and development enthusiast, Miss Rejoice Hassan, has posited that there is more to being an employable graduate than just having a degree and that basic qualification must be accompanied by problem-solving skills, analytical skills, communication skills, inter-personal skills, and technological skills to sell in the job market.

She made this assertion at a recent Town and Gown Seminar organised by the Department of Economics at Covenant University Ota, where she was a Guest Speaker and made a presentation titled, "The Professional World of Diverse Opportunities: How Ready Am I?"

In her presentation, she pointed out that the basic problem with the lack of employment in Nigeria, for example, is the lack of employable graduates. This, she said, is because many students focus on cramming to pass examinations and not learning and honing skills that would make them succeed in their jobs, businesses, and chosen careers.

She defined the term "employability" in her presentation as "a capacity for gaining and maintaining employment that depends on the knowledge, skills, and attitude an individual possesses." She also saw it as a combination of personal qualities, skills of various kinds, and understanding of a subject that may make an individual attractive to potential employers.

Furthermore, Miss Hassan stated that employability is a situation where graduates, for instance, have what it takes to be hired and function competently in graduate-level careers and/or to start up new enterprises (as entrepreneurs) or innovate in the existing industry (as entrepreneurs).

She advised students to take note of factors like skills and qualifications, experience, searching and opportunities, and lastly, attitude and expectations, which are the prerequisites to employability. Quoting Zig Ziglar, she stated, "Success occurs when opportunity meets preparation."

In order to succeed, she encouraged them to be self-motivated, be open to growth and learning, imbibe professionalism, be flexible, confident, teachable, and expect to receive feedback, but most of all, possess a positive attitude towards work.

Earlier, in his opening remarks, the Head of Department, Economics, Professor Evans Osabuohien, appreciated God and thanked the University Management for their continuous support in driving the goals behind the Town and Gown Series.

He explained that the theme of the presentation for the event is another step in driving the vision of Covenant University, which is reputed as the university with the highest employability rate in Nigeria. "The topic is timely and crucial for us with the rising level of graduate unemployment and a kind of growth termed "jobless growth." Thus, the place of preparation in taking advantage of opportunities cannot be overemphasised," he added.

He stated, "when opportunity marries preparation, they give birth to success (testimony), but there will be a miscarriage if there is no preparation when opportunities come. Remember the biblical story of the 10 virgins? What distinguished the 5 wise virgins from the 5 foolish ones was their level of preparation [Matthew 25:1-13]."

The erudite professor appreciated the guest speaker, who he referred to as a 2019 graduate of the Economics Department of Covenant University. "She has practical, social, and intellectual prowess, as we will see from her presentation. The department is intentionally focusing on its graduates for our Town and Gown Series. So that we can learn from our own who have passed through our crucible and are making marks in their diverse ways and places of assignment. Thus, I am more than happy to reiterate that we will be given a stimulating session. I request that we optimise the opportunity by engaging adequately," he opined.

Others at the event included senior members of the faculty and staff of the department.




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