We Must Always Prepare Students For Internship
”Professional communication is very vital at a workplace for it strengthens the employer-employee relationship,” said Mr. Nsubuga Allan, the Country director of Youth Rising Uganda
The use of social media platforms was also emphasized where the facilitator cautioned the scholars to have discipline when using them for they represent which kind of person owns the account. Spending lots of time on Facebook posting unnecessary pictures is a sign of laziness and employers can judge by just looking at your Facebook profile. He further explained to them how social media can be a source of income if at all you put your brains at work. Use of Email was also another topic that was introduced to the scholars. They learnt how to compose, email, and reply in a professional manner.
Another very important aspect of the training was shedding a light on Youth-Adult Partnerships. Young People and adults of course have different labels and perceptions of each other (lenses of judgement), and this largely affects how we interact with one another, not only at workspaces, but pretty much every where. This topic was critical because at workplaces, employers and employees have their own perspectives towards each other. For this activity, the scholars were given a task within their small groups to think about the labels that adults, youths, employers and employees have towards each other. Some of very laughable yet true labels that youth came up with included: Adults say that youths are lazy, dress indecently, they are drug addicts and are very disrespectful. Youth at the same time think that adults are old fashioned, nag, are over protective and they exaggerate. For employers, they mentioned that employers think that employees are saddists, dress improperly and are poor time managers while employees pointed out that employers are frauds, bossy, sex addicts and are corrupt. It was such an interesting session where the scholars were grouped into four ie adults,youths,employers and Employees.
That session culminated into the vision boarding where scholars were given time to reminisce the old days and also think about where they want to be in future like 5 years to come then later on illustrate them on a Manilla paper and present them. Some said they want to be motivational speakers, doctors, engineers others dreamt about owning expensive houses and posh cars. Another very impactful session was on financial management. Having financial discipline is something that is hard to achieve and also maintain, that’s why scholars had to go through this session of Financial literacy where they were taught how to save, the difference between stocks and shares, net pay plus gross pay. It was spear headed by Ms. Barbra Kyomuhendo an economist and facilitator at Youth Rising Uganda. One of the final fun activities of the day was a fashion show using a workplace theme. Scholars got creative in dressing and appearing as super professionals. Some even took it a notch higher and designed business logos. among other work related items. ›
For me, it was such an honor to interact with the scholars who are also young people like us. I personally remembered my time at University and really wished that I had gotten the same training Youth Rising gave to the scholars for my internships. Preparing students before they embark on an internship should be a MUST because they not only learn how to deal with new work routines, people and environment, but they also go armed with critical interpersonal, negotiation, communication and decision making skills, that make their experiences worthwhile. Let us therefore make it our responsibility to see to it that such soft-skills are at the fingertips of all young people.