I
t is usually imperative for me that my clothes fit properly. I would rather have my outfits tailored to fit than pick up an already-made outfit with an exorbitant price tag, from an expensive boutique, which will probably drown my personality. Such outfits give me room to be creative while accentuating my areas of ‘strengths’.

This is exactly how I feel about career & choosing one. As young people, we have within us a well of energy, creativity & passion, which if properly channeled will give a significant boost to economic development. However, sadly, we have young people in Nigeria and Africa wrongly fitted in careers and positions that drown their potentials. We notice that all over Africa, a greater percentage of young graduates are unemployed, waiting to be handed white collar jobs, when we can create jobs for ourselves and others if we follow through with our passion.

Every individual has inherent skills & abilities, personality traits, a niche of self-expression where they function best. My reasoning is that, career choices should be made based on these attributes. Education in Nigeria and Africa should go beyond the usual theoretical framework and help develop in the mind of young people; entrepreneurship mindset. We should be taught how to take initiatives, be creative and explore our potentials. From formative years, both parents and educators should pay attention to inherent potentials and aid us channel our energies & learning towards them.

Obviously, people perform better when they enjoy what they are doing. They are happier, fulfilled and more productive. For example, it will be a wrong fit for an extroverted person who is passionate about People’s Development to study Microbiology and even worse for the same to be employed as a Marketer in a Bank. Such person will definitely perform better & experience more fulfillment in a Capacity Building company or Human Resources Department of any Company.

Let us bear in mind that the development of any country is dependent on the Youths. Simply because, in young people lies vibrant energy, dogged passion, vast creativity, time advantage, ability to take risks, etc. Therefore it is important that these resources are channeled adequately.

In conclusion, my suggestion to young people is this: don’t focus on money while choosing a career rather focus on fulfillment, productivity, making a difference and financial freedom. And to parents? Advice your children to study a course that will help them create better jobs and not courses that will help them ‘get’ a ‘good’ job.

And finally, my suggestion to Guidance & Councilor’s and all Educators: help our young people make tailor-made career choices and develop in them a mindset that allows them take initiatives and explore their potentials.

Written by Onyi Uchegbulam

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