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Undergrads urged to use internships to gain skills
By ZAZALI MUSA
JOHOR BARU: Undergraduates are advised to fully utilise their internship training programmes at companies and industries to gain as much knowledge and skills as possible.
Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said apart from universities, they could also gain knowledge from outside their campuses to prepare them for the working world.
He said while the practical programmes attended by the graduates might only last for only few months, this should not be an excuse for them not to gain something useful for them.
“Pick up a thing or two from your mentors or experienced workers while you are doing your practical training at these companies or industries,” said Mohamed Khaled.
He said this in a press conference at the ground breaking ceremony of the 25-storey service residence condominium at Bandar Uda Utama near here recently.
Mohamed Khaled said while a university was a place for undergraduates to take up disciplines or courses to suit them for a working world, the process stopped there.
He added the working environment was totally different from the university days and what they learnt in university might not what they expect when they started working.
“Universities and industries should collaborate to produce human capital which will help to transform Malaysia into a high income nation,” added Mohamed Khaled.
He said industries and companies must be willing to share their expertise and knowledge with undergraduates while they undergo internship programme at the respective places.
Mohamed Khaled said the Government’s objective was to produce all rounder graduates who did not solely depending on jobs from the public and private sectors but those with entrepreneurial skills.
“We want to see our graduates to become job providers upon leaving their universities and create job for others instead of becoming job seekers,” he said.
Graduates too picky on jobs
By ZAZALI MUSA, MARCH 2012
JOHOR BARU: Jobs are plenty in the country but many fresh graduates are not realistic and remain choosy when it comes to seeking employment.
Hiring agent JobStreet.com chief executive officer Mark Chang said one of the most prevalent issues among them are high expectations on drawing good salary.
He added that others factors include a mismatch between the industries and the universities where many graduates are not marketable.
“Parents also play a part where they would rather have their children working closely to their hometown and not willing to part with them,” he said.
Chang commented on this at a lecture called ‘Starting a Company: the JobStreet Story’ at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) Skudai recently.
The lecture series is part of the UTM’s programme to encourage its undergraduates to become entrepreneurs and job providers upon completing their studies.
He said that on the average, there were about 30,000 new jobs that were being offered on online job portals monthly in the country with many of the vacancies in the sales and marketing, IT, construction and manufacturing activities.
Chang said on-line jobs applications are getting popular in the region among job seekers and companies as it reduced certain work such as processing application papers.
“Applying online is just the first round of the job application process and it does not guarantee that employers will hire you immediately,” he stressed.
On whether a job seeker is able to secure employment, Chang said this depended entirely on the second round of the interviewing process.
He also advised the undergraduates to polish up their soft skills while studying as it would help prepare them for job interviews.
Undergrads need to develop soft skills, says Khaled, Minister of Higher Education
MARCH, 2010 - The Star
SKUDAI: Undergraduates need to develop their soft skills while in university as preparation to enter the competitive job market.
Employers were no longer looking for graduates armed only with good grades, but were seeking those with effective soft skills such as the ability to communicate well and work in a team, said Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Khaled Nordin.
The main role played by universities was to impart knowledge and it was up to undergraduates to acquire the soft skills, he said at the Career Day 2010.
It was jointly organised by the Institution of Surveyors Malaysia, Johor Education Department and Universiti Teknologi Malaysia for Form Four and Five students.
Khaled also called on undergraduates to enrich their campus life with studies and extra-curricular activities, such as participating in sports events, joining societies and doing volunteer work.
He added companies or employers did not necessarily hire graduates who passed with flying colours, adding those with average academic qualification but better soft skills had a better chance of being hired.
Separately, Khaled called on parents to also change their mindset and not only limit their children’s education courses to medicine, engineering or architecture only.
Too many students were applying to study these popular courses in universities, although the chances of getting in were slim due to limited space available.