What is the issue really? Is it really just about “soft-skills”?

Mustapa: Method of producing graduates needs to be reviewed, improved
R.Manirajan
KUALA LUMPUR (May 29, 2007): The method of producing graduates needs to be reviewed and improved on with strong education policies if Malaysia is to have employable graduates who will contribute to the employment market.

Higher Education Minister Datuk Mustapa Mohamed said today such measures would not only help reduce the education gap between the races, but will also reduce the mismatch in employment among graduates.

His ministry was addressing the problem by enhancing graduates’ soft skills.

“Students with excellent soft skills can fit into any environment because they are adaptable, flexible and will have commitment, perseverance and the correct attitude, which cuts across all disciplines,” he told reporters after speaking at the World Islamic
Economic Forum on Leveraging knowledge and education to unlock innovation and creativity today.

Mustapa said since January, the ministry has focused on making soft skills a part of university curriculum.

He noted Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) graduates who undergo certification programmes with Microsoft, Infosys or Intel were very employable.

“In the next semester, we will continue to give this crash course to graduates for four months with major multinational companies. But the programme needs to be embedded in the unversity’s curriculum in the next semester,” he said.

However, he said this required the private sector’s cooperation.Mustapa said 500 ICT students have undergone the certification programme and another 1,065 will be put into the programme, out of which more than 90% will be employed.

“Beginning next year, we will extend this programme to 3,000 students,” he said.

At the Forum, Mustapa spoke of the need to reduce the education gap between Muslim and non-Muslim countries.

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