1st Nov, Cyberjaya: Dika College was invited to play a significant role at the International Youth Congress 2018 (IYC2018) themed Nurturing Values Building Legacies which took place at the Multimedia University. The institution was represented by its Chief Executive Pua Chee Ling who chaired and facilitated the forum discussing the area of future skills which was aptly titled ‘Reinvention of Education and Skills Training for Tomorrow’s Career’.
Dika’s participation is a milestone for the college known for its commitment to training educators in early childhood education, and a momentous one for Pua who places great emphasis on equipping students with relevant and leading-edge skills.
The forum panel was represented by key managing personnel who hailed from leading institutions namely Cosmopoint Group of Colleges, CIMB and Accenture Malaysia. In the candid but fervent hour-long session, Pua led the discussion with pertinent questions that the panelists passionately took to in their responses.
In opening the discussion Pua posed the question of what do employers look for in the hiring process. In making a strong reference to the imperatives required by Industry 4.0, the panelists concurred that values play an important role, supported by a positive personality and complimented by a relevant and highly adaptable set of skills.
Her next probe which delved deeper into the types of skill sets drew a slew of response from the panelist who highlighted being honest, courageous, collaborative, able to navigate complexity, constantly seeking new ideas, agile, responsive to change, able to learn and being digitally savvy as key skills to success.
Pua then explored employer predicaments such as the demand for high salaries by inexperienced new graduates. This struck a chord with the panelist who voiced that salaries are not a given benefit but rather, fresh graduates needed to prove their mettle before being rewarded with remuneration packages that commensurate their ability.
They went on to mention that many corporations these days, look for fit, and this is done through various psychometric assessments which focus on an individual’s mental capabilities and behavioural style. It is therefore important for job seekers to understand that the hiring process takes on many facets and a proof of qualification cannot be solely used to indicate an incumbent’s abilities.
In engaging the panelists thoughts on a way forward, Pua asked the question of how and if the education institutions and the industry would collaborate to ensure that graduates are ready for employment. The panelists were keen to emphasise that many of the jobs required thirty years from now may not even have been invented today. As such corporations may take to hiring and training individuals as early as after high school, therefore rendering higher education irrelevant.
On the other hand, the panelist advised youth to be open to new ways of learning, which may involve a departure from the conventional and traditional brick and mortar approach. This would also mean that youth should be looking at gaining a wider scope of competence as opposed to being too niched or focused; alongside ensuring their they keep pace with the pervasive and ubiquitous nature of the digital revolution.
The question and answer session from the youth garnered many concerns on ways to bridge the requirements of the future, current learning conventions and the traditional dependence on rote learning.
Pua aptly concluded the forum by reiterating that the education system needed to be transformed to one that is student centric, allowing students to discover their calling in an environment with spurs creativity, incentivises innovativeness and advocates a deep understanding of humanistic values. Ultimately, Pua emphasised, everyone must be the change they want to see.
The International Youth Conference is an annual event organised by Pertubuhan Perintis Malaysia (MyPerintis) also known as the Malaysia Trailblazers Association which promotes youth empowerment. With Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohd as its patron, MyPerintis focuses on education, employability and entrepreneurship for the youth, alongside inspiring them to make a meaningful and progressive impact in the world.