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Graduates urged to be innovative

 

Limpho Sello

LESOTHO College Education (LCE) Rector Dr Karabo Mokobocho-Mohlakoana says tertiary education can be a launch-pad for pursuing various ventures in light of the high unemployment rate in the country.

Dr Mokobocho-Mohlakoana made the remark on Friday during the teacher training college’s 21st graduation ceremony. This year, LCE awarded diplomas in primary education, secondary education, education in secondary technology and certificates in Early Childhood Care and Development (ECCD) to 1 319 students.

Dr Mokobocho-Mohlakoana said the graduates should apply themselves diligently in their work and be professional at all times.

“As you go into communities, work with courage, respect and professionalism,” Dr Mokobocho-Mohlakoana said.

“We expect you to use the skills you acquired here and shape the lives of Basotho children because we trust that you are ready to put what you were taught into practice.”

She also told the Sunday Express on the sidelines of the event that a large number of graduates were not being absorbed into the educational system as there were limited opportunities.

Dr Mohlakoana said options such as starting businesses had to be considered by the graduates to avoid staying at home while waiting for formal employment.

“The qualifications these graduates earned have unlocked their minds, so I urge them to use the knowledge they gathered to come up with business ideas to earn a living,” she said.

“The mind of a graduate from a tertiary institution has more clarity than someone with basic education only. That is why they need to move away from just expecting to be hired by the government because we all know about the very high unemployment rate in the country.”

The Rector further said the graduates needed to be innovative and creative to find means of survival given that there was no guarantee of government jobs.

“They can unite as graduate teachers and come up with ideas that can take them forward,” she said.

“If less-educated people were able to find ways of earning a living, why not these graduates?”

In his address, LCE Chancellor Dr James Motlatsi urged the government to engage their South African counterparts and discuss the possibility of  exporting some of the teachers who cannot be absorbed locally to the neighbouring country.

“Since many Basotho worked in South African mines over the years, the same thing can be done with our teachers,” he said.

For the graduates’ part, Bobi Mapheko said they were ready to put into practice what they learnt at the LCE.

“We are ready to make a positive contribution to Lesotho’s development,” he said.

“This college has transformed us into professional and respectable people and we are keen to serve the nation with the qualifications we hold.”

To his fellow graduates, Mr Mapheko said: “Let us use the skills and knowledge we acquired to equip the children of Lesotho so they can also become leaders of this country.”

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