Agency calls for industry linkage to create job opportunities

Dr. Alice Kande acting Director General of Kenya National Qualifications Authority(KNQA). [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

Learning institutions need to create linkage with manufacturing industries that can offer advisory on market-driven courses.

Kenya National Qualification Authority acting Director General Dr Alice Kande said by fostering partnerships, industrial attachment provide space for real-world insights and connect talent to quality employment opportunities.

She said this also leads to development of market-relevant skills which offer real understanding of current challenges and potential solutions to learners.

''Industry experts possess real-world insights into the rapidly evolving market trends, skill demands, and emerging technologies,'' Dr Kande said.

She made the remarks at Sigalagala National Polytechnic, during a forum to enhance collaboration between Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) system and industries.

The event brought together trainers, Principals and Industry to develop a framework for creating employability skills within the TVET sector in Western Kenya.

The project which is funded by the Mastercard foundation is implemented by Humber College from Canada.

Dr Kande said linkages also create room for academia to contribute by tailoring curricula to meet industry needs, integrating theoretical knowledge with hands-on training.

''By actively engaging with academic institutions, these experts can provide valuable guidance on curriculum design, ensuring that courses align with the current and future needs of the job market,'' she stated.

She said such collaborations produce all round graduates equipped with the skills and experiences required for successful careers in the ever-evolving job landscape.

Presiding over the 2Jiajiri/GIZ Graduation Ceremony, President William Ruto said the cooperation will close the gap between skills and labour.

''The linkage will ensure the gap between education and training and human capital requirements of industries are conclusively closed,'' Dr Ruto said.

President Ruto stated that the government will ensure more than 100,000 internship opportunities have been created for students during and after training.

''We want to expand this space so that you can be accommodated in an internship. We cannot just imagine growing the economy without thinking on how to create jobs for you in the technical area,'' Dr Ruto added.

Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu said attachments will solve unemployment in the country.

''This internship will help graduates acquire the necessary technical skills and competences that are ripe to serve the country in various areas of the economy,'' Machogu said.

Dr Kande said that the Authority is developing a framework on National Curriculum Development that will address the inconsistencies in the curriculum development process and implementation in the country.

This, she said, will help in harmonizing the development of curricula and training programs/courses by various actors resulting in nationally, regionally, and internationally recognized qualifications.

Industry PS Dr Juma Mukhwana said exposing learners early to skills will enable them to grow down in the industry with the demands of the industry.

''Industry-sponsored internships, attachments and apprenticeships offer students opportunities to apply classroom learning in real work settings, enhancing their employability and soft skills,'' Dr Mukhwana added.