World over, youths face the challenge of deciding on a career path to follow and how to start their professional lives. This challenge has been exacerbated for the Zimbabwean student due to the poor labor market being experienced in the country at the moment as well as fast changing job demands. Fast paced technology changes are a major contributor the career challenges being faced by youths today. Research shows that 50% of today’s jobs will be replaced by Artificial intelligence by 2020 and 40% of today’s school children will be in jobs that do not exist today in the same period. This knowledge has led to the rise of the 21st century skills movement which seeks to prepare today’s youth for the world they will live.
On this background, the Higherlife Foundation team held a career guidance session at Goromonzi High School, situated in the Mashonaland East Province of Zimbabwe on the 29th of July 2016. The session was aimed at teaching scholars the importance of possessing 21st Century skills and over 1000 students attended the event. This event was held as part of the foundations Lifelong Development programme. Key messages came from the Higherlife Foundation Director for Education, Dr. Mubaiwa, a Goromonzi alumni, who shared Higherlife Foundations vision for education with the students and the Higherlife Branding and Communications Manager, Ngoni Katsamba who spoke to the students about 21st century skills. A number of Capernaum scholars and Joshualites including the Men of Morehouse also shared their stories with the students.
In his key note, Dr. Mubaiwa emphasized the need to dedicate oneself to his/her studies as education is the fastest and most reliable means to transforming one’s life. He called on the students to take the opportunity to be in school seriously and have personal strategy to take them where they want to be as individuals, as “a person without strategy will have one created for them by others”
Presenting on 21st century skills Katsamba spoke of the core skills one would require, the corresponding competencies and personal traits that would make one stand out in the 21st century. Katsamba emphasized the important space that technology occupies in this 21st century and how this requires everyone to be competent in this area. He placed a lot of emphasis on creativity to remain relevant saying that “the world now requires people with an inquisitive mind”. He also spoke of the need to be knowledgeable about current technology trends pointing out that by the time you get to year 4 in a 4 year Computers Science program at University, what you learnt in year 1 and 2 will most likely be irrelevant.
The team also shared exam tips, tips on how to apply to local and international universities as well as possible career paths through mentorship style break away sessions.