Insecurity: Varsity Dons Advocate Vocational Skills Approach

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Piqued by the alarming rate of crime and other anti-social vices bedevilling the country occasioned by unemployment among the youth, university scholars have advocated for improvement on technical and vocational skills-based educational approach to address the menace.
This was the view of speakers at the ongoing 3rd Annual Conference organized by the Faculty of Vocational and Technical Education of the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education, Rumuolumeni, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, yesterday.
The speakers were of the opinion that making concerted efforts towards improvement on the nation’s vocational and technical education policies would bridge the gap of unemployment in the country, which according to them, gave rise to numerous social vices such as kidnapping, cultism and armed robbery, among others, in the society.
They also called for a paradigm shift from certificate-only based education approach to a skills-based education approach.
The theme of the two-day conference is, “Vocational Skill Acquisition, Leveraging Unemployment, Social Vices, Food Insecurity and Technological Retardations for Sustainable Development in Nigeria.”
Speaking at the occasion, the Vice Chancellor of IAUOE, Prof Ozo-Mekuri Ndimele said the role of vocational skills and technical education in national development cannot be overemphasised, adding that what the country needs to revamp its economy was diversification to vocational education.
Represented by Prof Samuel Amaele, Ndimele noted the important contributions of vocational education to the development of the institution, and pledged the support of his administration to the faculty.
Also speaking, Prof Edmond Anaele of University of Nsukka, in his keynote address, described the theme of the conference as very apt, adding that a graduate of vocational skills would be self-dependent and work toward contributing to societal growth than those without skills attached to their certificates.
Prof Onyewuchi Akaranta while presenting his lead paper, opined that education plays a critical role toward the attainment of sustainable development in any country, and recommended that vocational and skills education be introduced early among pupils and students in primary and secondary schools in the country as this, he said, would do the nation good.