Skills mismatch contributes to high un-employment among young university graduates


Director General, State Department Vocational and Technical Training (TVET), Dr Kipkirui Langat. PHOTO/COURTESY

Key highlights

New Curricula is aimed at producing students with the capacity and capability to:

  • Analyse problems and select appropriate solutions;
  • Communicate ideas and information effectively;
  • To design and use technology;
  • Show leadership and conscientiousness;
  • Demonstrate entrepreneurial capabilities
  • Self-manage themselves, recognize their strengths and weaknesses and find ways to improve their performance
  • Continue learning an on-going process of learning in order to bring about overall self-improvement.



Reports have shown that technical skills alone do not make individuals marketable. A combination of technical and employability skills make a person very competitive.

The Permanent Secretary, Vocational Training, Dr Dinah Mwinzi, has challenged education stakeholders to come up with views on how to integrate personal management and social skills in Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET)  curriculum so as to graduate independent and skilled students to assimilate easily into the workplace.

“We are currently looking at the current skills mismatch in the work place and coming up with programs and solutions to fill those gaps,” Permanent Secretary, Vocational training Dr Dinah Mwinzi has said.

The PS has challenged education stakeholders to come up with views on how to integrate personal management and social skills in TVET curriculum so as to graduate independent and skilled students to assimilate easily into the workplace.

Skills Mismatch

And, the Director General, State Department Vocational and Technical Training Dr. Kipkirui Langat held that a closer look at youth employment, statistics show that in many low and middle income countries youth un-employment is persistently high among university graduates.

“Many people dismiss promising and meaningful career paths in areas where employment demand is greater, simply because of the stigma attached to technical and vocational occupations, “said Dr Langát.

Employers are finding that regardless of their level of education, regardless of the sectors, most new hires lack communication and client-relations skills; organizational and prioritization skills such as time-management;  flexibility and adaptability.

Entry-level employees in many emerging markets may be technically overqualified, but lack teamwork and interpersonal skills, making collaboration with colleagues and problem-solving between team members difficult.

The educationist advised, there is need to create more awareness about employment opportunities require a TVET qualification, an area with significant employment potential.

This lack of preparation to navigate to wider variety of work­places   can be tied specifically to a lack of career knowledge and awareness.

Vocational training for SDGs

In the stakeholder meeting at Kenya school of Monetary studies, Nairobi, it emerged that Kenya has continued to anchor its Tertiary and vocational training on Vision 2030 and the Sessional Paper No. 1 of 2005 on Education and Training Policy Framework.

The documents map out the necessary skills and competencies required by the industry, in order to achieve Sustainable Development goals (SDGs). Efficient Skills adaptable to vast changing technological environment, and a competitive edge in the global economy.

Kenya is geared towards producing highly skilled human capital that is able to efficiently produce high quality products.

However, Dr Langát explained; Technical skills alone do not make someone competitive in the job market. Skills and knowledge are the engines of economic growth and social development.

“The work place is one of the fastest changing in the world today; the shift is now towards high technology, service-oriented and self-directed work teams,” he said.

Help us to report stories that expose human rights violations, corruption, environmental degradation, spark reforms and generally spotlight issues of public interest.
While traditional news reporting is losing its relevance, serious investigation now requires more than basic journalistic skills. To do this we require a lot of resources.

Nelson Mandela once said: “A critical, independent, and investigative press is the lifeblood of any democracy. The press must be free from state interference. It must have the economic strength to stand up to the blandishments of government officials. It must have sufficient independence from vested interests to be bold and inquiring without fear or favor. It must enjoy the protection of the constitution, so that it can protect our rights as citizens.”

If you like our journalism support us to continue bringing you groundbreaking and agenda setting stories.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here