In its sixth year, the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at the University of Gondar continues to break through barriers in some of today’s most critical concerns. Scholars from Ethiopia and adjacent nations are making significant progress in changing their own lives and, more significantly, the lives of their communities.
With that being said, some of the Scholars are finished with their education and are on their way to transition from their educational life to full time employment. To make this transition a smooth one, the Scholars Program office at the University of Gondar has gone forward with a training program to better equip them with the knowledge and tools they would need in today’s modern workforce. The 3 months training which is being provided by Dereja.com (sister company of ethiojobs.net) is focused on better preparing the Scholars for what is to come.
Out of the ten former scholars, who graduated in January 2021, nine of them are attending the Dereja Academy Accelerators Program (DAAP). The training program, which is an application-based training program for scholars who are ready to make it to the job market, has been shown and proven to bear results. Other university are also taking the training and have attested to its forward-looking stance on employment. The program has an intensive selection process and training that focuses on building their soft and professional skills.
According to Mr. Muluken Jegnie, Career Service Coordinator for the MCF Scholars Program at the University of Gondar, “the overall purpose of the program is not to guarantee employment, but the program will only serve those graduates who are interested to become high caliber candidates and become competent to fit the demand of the employers.”
The training program is developed and divided into two components. The first component deals with soft skills training and it focuses on the following 8 modules. These include; self-discovery, building self-image, communication, analytical thinking, effective planning, personal financial management, understanding gender at the workplace and effective job search.
Moreover, the second component deals with professional skills training. In addition to the soft skills scholars will be equipped with professional training based on their career choices or their field of study. For example they tailor the training to their specific field for instance if they studied engineering, IT, construction management or project management the training will be specific to their career path.
The training that is being held virtually has several features. It incorporates introduction sessions, independent learning activities and live reflections and Q&A sessions amongst others.
Scholars’ commitment to the Program is to become transformative leaders in their communities and countries once they finish their studies at the University of Gondar. To make a significant effect, these exceptional youth who are people with disabilities and disadvantages must participate in Ethiopia’s workforce. Although it is commonly recognized that the transition to employment is a problem in Ethiopia, many developed countries are experiencing this societal conundrum as well.
A large number of Ethiopian adolescents are currently unemployed, and the transfer from university study to employment might be difficult at times. But such training, that are organized by the program office, are conducted to create a more conducive environment allowing scholars to be quality candidates once they are out in today’s job market.