By Jeoffrey Mukubi
THE 2018 installment of the annual Namibia Career Expo was recently launched with the aim of exposing, inspiring and educating young learners and graduates on the vast amount of career paths and opportunities available for them.
The Careers Expo brings together local and international exhibitors comprising of government, tertiary institutions, training providers, corporates, state-owned enterprises and civil societies.
The organisations convened to provide valuable career related information, funding opportunities and mentorship programmes to learners.
Speaking at the launch of the expo on Tuesday, Jason Kasuto indicated that the expo was incepted 10 years ago and the founders who were young professionals felt a level of emptiness in pursuing their dreams. “This reality is the straightforward fact that information is the key that unlocks the potential of young minds. We pursued to fill the void and bridge the gap thus giving birth to Namibia Careers Expo. As a not for profit initiative the Namibia Career Expo has grown into the premier career showcase in the country,” explained Kasuto.
The annual event is hosted in Windhoek, Walvis Bay and Ongwediva, attracting over 40 exhibitors and manages in excess of 3 500 learners with 30 speakers sharing advice and insights to learners per event.
This year’s expo will take place on 19 and 20 June at the Windhoek Country Club.“The Namibia Career Expo Trust has therefore seen it is as necessary to organise and host a national symposium on education, career development, and employment in Namibia.” he said.
The symposium will be themed around the infusion of market demands, information communication technology, tertiary and vocational education as well as early childhood development. Other topical issues will include the role of parents, morality and ethics, sports and HIV/AIDS.
The symposium will take place as a complimentary event to the exhibition. It is expected to bring together relevant stakeholders in training and education, policy makers, key experts, the private sector, educators and trainers.
The further aim of the meeting will be to contribute to a national framework for addressing the sectorial skills shortage and the growing youth unemployment rate. “The symposium will aim to produce tangible resolutions in aligning education and industry with the national development plans. Looking at the relevant skills and human capital required for the ultimate goal of achieving an industrialized nation.” Gerard Vries of the education ministry was adamant that the expo will give ample time to Namibian learners and other out of school youth to be exposed to opportunities that exist at tertiary institutions in the country and the world over.
“The Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture is mandated to educate and train [learners] for sustainable national development, [as well as to] promote arts and culture,” said Vries.“This mandate is well aligned to the national developmental agenda and the objectives of the National Development Plan, one of which is to have a sufficient skilled workforce as we march towards a knowledge based economy.”
Vries also applauded Kasuto and his team for the initiative to meet government half way.
“The ministry is thus expected to matriculate learners that are ready to take up studies that will enable them to fill the gaps that exist in our workforce. Indeed, as a nation, it is our obligation to fulfill and meet these goals as clearly stated in the Harambee Prosperity Plan.”
The president of the Namibia National Students Organisation (Nanso) Ester Simon explained that the expo has been a valuable window of opportunity and network for critical aspects.
“It has been offering relevant information on a wide ranch of career options, while dispensing relevant and strategic tools that prepare learners and students for leadership and success,” said Simon.
“The career expo has thus been serving as a one stop shop for career guidance, helping learners and students conduct research, enlightening students about employment opportunities, bursary offers, priority and diverse careers in different and important fields and areas of further study,” she stressed. According to Simon: “This initiative has been a rare opportunity for students and graduates as job seekers, to meet potential employers and working professionals for advice, inspiration and motivation.”
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015