Lecturers to go for industrial attachment
LECTURERS at tertiary institutions are now expected to go for industrial attachment to enable them to troubleshoot what is obtaining in industry and produce quality graduates, with the University of Zimbabwe already implementing the programme.
This is part of higher and tertiary institutions’ response to industry concerns that the higher and tertiary education sector is producing graduates without industry requisite skills.
The new programme was revealed yesterday during a Zimpapers Knowledge Centre organised conference dubbed Tourism and Hospitality Industry meets Tertiary held at Holiday Inn in Bulawayo.
The conference brought under one roof players from the tourism and hospitality sector led by the Ministry of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry and Higher and Tertiary Education Innovation, Science and Technology Development Ministry and its various tertiary institutions.
The players from the tourism and hospitality sector threw the ball toward the higher and tertiary sector, highlighting the skills gap that needed addressing.
National Manpower Advisory Council (NAMACO) chairperson and University of Zimbabwe’s Vice Chancellor Professor Paul Mapfumo said Government was already addressing industry concerns through implementation of Heritage Based Education 5.0.
NAMACO is a body that advises the higher and tertiary minister on what needs to be done to develop competent human capital to transform the country into an upper middle-income economy.
“You were talking in yester years what has been really bedeviling the companies. There was a response and this response was exactly to the issues that you raised. So, help us to now take this issue forward. We are now in a phase where we want to address them together. This is where you come in,” said Prof Mapfumo.
“We have made it an ordinance at the University of Zimbabwe that lecturers go on attachment. When lecturers were making noise resisting transformation and part of that transformation was to send them on attachment. We are not saying they are going to start being schooled again, I’m saying they are going there to troubleshoot and also exercise their skills. I think it will be good to send lectures at your companies.”
Normally, students in their third year of university studies are the ones who attend industrial attachment so that they have practical experiences of what they are learning.
He said higher and tertiary institutions have been tasked with finding solutions to problems affecting the society.
“We want to establish critical skills for the economy. What matches what demand. So, there should be clarity in industry on what you need. The University of Zimbabwe has devised a phrase: ‘what do our people want.’ If our people want clean water we will give them clean water, if they want jackets we will give them jackets. So, industry you are our people, industry means commerce, means society,” he said.
Delivering a keynote address, Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development Minister Professor Amon Murwira, who was represented by his deputy Raymore Machingura said the Second Republic under President Mnangagwa reconfigured higher and tertiary education sector for the country to modernise and industrialise in for the country to become an upper middle income economy by 2030.
He said Government replaced Education 3.0 which only focused on teaching, research, community engagement to Heritage Based Education 5.0 whose thrust is to produce goods and services through innovation and industrialisation.
Deputy Minister Machingura said education produced at higher and tertiary institutions should respond to national societal needs.
“Higher and tertiary education institutions lead in driving the national vision by providing the necessary capabilities. National capability is in turn fulfilled by the design and configuration of human capital and national assets. Our goal in the higher and tertiary education sector is to develop human capital that is fit for purpose with an ability to transform knowledge into goods and services,” said Deputy Minister Machingura.
“Real education by nature must lead to industrialisation and modernisation through the production of goods and services to satisfy the needs of the people. It therefore means human needs must inform education curricula to produce industry that satisfies human needs.”
He said the country needs to address the national skills gap which stands at 38 percent so that they match with the country’s 90 percent literacy levels.
Deputy Minister Machingura said new industries are being established through the implementation of Heritage Based Education 5.0.
He said Heritage Based Education 5.0 shifts from a master-servant colonial education system whose thrust was to preserve the status quo without leaving room for innovation.
“Results of our successful implementation of Heritage Based Education 5.0 provided answers to us on why there has been a disjunction between university outputs and industry. We now know that it was a design problem,” he said.
“It means the industry was not resulting from our education but an education from elsewhere! Our task was then to develop an appropriate design – Heritage Based Education 5.0, which we have already done. We changed to Heritage Based Education 5.0 to serve the needs of our people than to continue to use a design (Education 3.0) that was no longer consistent with the needs of our country.”
Deputy Minister Machingura said the skills being imparted to graduates will carry the country towards an upper middle income by 2030.
“Heritage Based Education 5.0 design aims to produce well-rounded individuals who not only have 21st century skills required to shape the development of our nation, but also individuals who have the correct attitudes, individuals who know that, “Nyika Inovakwa Nevene Vayo/ Ilizwe lakhiwa ngabaninilo,” said Deputy Minister Machingura.
He said students are at the centre of implementing Heritage Based Education 5.0.
Deputy Minister Machingura said higher and tertiary institutions have established a medical oxygen factory, cough syrup, and are in the process of establishing a factory to manufacture bitumen, all in response to national challenges. — @nqotshili