Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor Students Affairs, Professor Happy Siphambe, has appealed to the private sector in Botswana to partner with the University of Botswana to create a conducive learning environment at the University.
Professor Siphambe was speaking at the 2019 Careers Roundtable held the UB Library Auditorium on September 19, 2019 under the theme: ‘Up-skilling graduates for a knowledge based economy’.
The ultimate goal of the Careers Roundtable was to empower graduates with desirable skills and competencies relevant for the knowledge-based economy.
Consequently, Professor Siphambe said the development of graduates with innovative and creative mindset beyond their GPA and related academic achievements should be a partnership between the University, the private sector and public service.
He observed that such partnership should create a conducive learning environment resulting in development of market ready skills and competencies.
“This is premised on the notion that the academic curriculum without strong linkages with other human resource trainers, developers and employees is not a sufficient strategy to evoke comprehensive careers planning and development programmes,” said Professor Siphambe.
He commended the Careers and Counselling Centre for its continuous tenacity and innovation despite budgetary constraints. He further challenged the stakeholders who participated in the event to work hard and identify skills and competencies students require prior to graduation from the University and befitting a Fourth Industrial Revolution graduate.
The roundtable targeted final year students at the University of Botswana and critical stakeholders involved in employment, training and policy formulation. The stakeholders included Human Resources Development Council, Botswana Qualifications Authority, Human Resources Management Consultants, Botswana Innovation Hub, financial institutions and UB alumni.
National Agricultural Research Development Institute (NARDI) Chief Executive Officer, Dr Bernard Bulawayo who is also UB Council member, gave a keynote address.
The objectives of the roundtable were to dialogue with critical stakeholders about skills and competencies desirable in the knowledge based economy and develop a mutual understanding with trainers, recruiters and graduates on the required career competencies, skills and behaviours.
In addition, the event was held to generate information or data that would inform future programming, teaching and evaluation of the career services programme.