By Emmanuel Leslie Addae
Facing the skills gap issue, which is also one of the top most reasons for youth unemployment in Africa (about 10 million students who graduate from the 668 universities in Africa each year do not get jobs), We, as a Pan-African Social enterprise have made it our prerogative to accelerate the level of, especially youth employment across Africa by filling in the skills gap.
Having worked extensively with youths in Africa over the years, we have discovered that the general transition from school-to-work is very weak. The educational institutions and the working bodies are both to blame for the lame nature of the transition. Many employers lament about the poor skills of entry level talents; they take in young people and get frustrated in the short run due to lack or inadequate skills on the part of the personnel.
In respect to helping solve this indispensable situation, we have been working tirelessly, not only to patch the hole but also build young generational change pioneers, especially in business, creativity and innovation through well thought-out avenues.
These avenues include innovative training programs that would give these youth the opportunity to acquire soft skills seeing that these are highly valued by employers and have been shown to be correlated with improved outcomes in school, life and work.
The Africa Internship Academy (AIA) (https://www.AfricaInternshipAcademy.com/) is a youth employment accelerator in Ghana that provides work readiness and entrepreneurship programs for secondary and higher education students as well as graduates to gain entrepreneurial and employable skills. We proceed to assign mentors to them and connect them to employers looking for entry-level talents.
AIA’s model which is a Work Integrated Learning Program (WILP) has proven to be a good approach as it gives interns unique opportunities to learn from our experienced faculty while they gain hands-on experience in a diversity of fields and in addition acquire soft skills that groom them to be change agents.
Our Work Integrated Learning Program was recently selected by the Africa Union and NEPAD under the African Skills Portal for Youth Employment and Entrepreneurship (ASPYEE) as a Good Practice tool to enhance youth development and empowerment across the African continent.
AIA’s vision is to reduce the rate of youth unemployment on the continent by grooming young talents as change agents through our work readiness and entrepreneurship programs. This offers incredible lifetime opportunities for future leaders, influencers, and decision-makers from all over Africa to be groomed professionally, network extensively, experience workplace culture, and build lasting positive relationships with the heavy weights in their chosen industries.
At Africa Internship Academy, we inspire Africa’s youth to start their own businesses, and give them the skills to succeed in the global job market.
The writer works with Africa Internship Academy