then why is experience not the foremost cornerstone of our collective education? Many dream of attending the highest rated university and will pay top dollar for a degree, which is believed to open the door to a well-paying job. However, of those 20-somethings that have worked to obtain their undergraduate degree, are likely to remain without a job in the future. The outcome efficiency for attending college is at a quickly declining rate, as many schools are not what they appear to be. The concept of “best” school and ratings criteria are based on characteristics such as setting up schemes to reject applicants and aiming mass marketing at a to-be standardized work force, all for the sake of keeping costs for attendance high as institutions rise to the top of rating scales.
With a concern for high placement in the job market, it is logical that any university or higher learning institution would align themselves with employment trends, which in turn aligns with the globally changing marketplace, yet this is not the case. For most employers, innovation is likely to be the most important contribution to the workplace, drawing from skills such as communicative excellence, critical thinking, and complex problem solving. Overtime, as it is happening in other countries, employers in The Gambia will be putting higher preference on other skills, than an actual completion of major coursework itself.
Current education itself has evolved to a point where the value gained is vitally important, and must not be neglected. Students will develop best when they seek both traditional and non-traditional styles of education, simultaneously, as there will be a then logical co-evolution of skills, knowledge, and passion. Creating a trans-disciplinary environment combined with a focus on experiential-learning is more likely to cater to the passions of the student, allowing them to individualise themselves further and create a self-motivating psyche.
The future workplace is evolving with a more globally-connected world, structures that operate beyond our familiarity and a more dynamic nature of media, which calls for a development of the skills that lie far beyond our current educational results. This is not only a priority of students and their direct parties, but government policy makers as well. It is also critical that the private sector must invest in more internship opportunities, and provide a basis for interns to provide their own innovative values to the overall company.
Ideally, we must look to the past to bring about these practices; modelling our behaviors from that of the Renaissance to seek out apprenticeship, strategizing ourselves to make the best of what little we have as if we were in tribal wars, and thinking like Greek philosophers to ponder our presence and purpose.
As this concerns education in The Gambia, maintaining these ideologies of learning can be working answers to innovating education in the country. A concern exists among teachers and parents regarding the quality and relevance of learning materials, according to “A Situational Analysis of Education in The Gambia” from Save The Children. Additional concerns include a general access to school, and enrollment maintenance, especially for women and girls. It is possible that a more logical solution for this gender-specific issue may include education ‘camps’, as well employed by the Indian non-profit Voice for Girls. Combining all these issues with the widespread disability of general poverty, and parents wanting to have their kin contribute to family income, educational equality may be far off from success as long as it pertains to traditional modeling.
With the previously mentioned modalities and new-found perspectives, we can bring quality education to those that viewed it previously inaccessible. Imagine catching developing areas up to speed with future skills. Stimulating initiatives like social entrepreneurship, experience-based business and community projects, applying studies to the most current and relevant issues, investing in multi-disciplinary and mentored co-working spaces, and seeking out education in the way the individual learns best are all fascinating new frontiers. Ironically enough, these modes of approach evolve naturally from forging relationships, passionate ambitions, identifying important problems, taking action, and other humanistic observations we have elicited since the beginning of our time. It is then with great hope and heartfelt partnership, that revolutionising education for the better is only a matter of being human.]]>