Skills, not varsity degrees alone will determine job provisions – JAMB Registrar

Stephen Olufemi Oni, Ilorin

The Registrar, Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, has cautioned that university degrees would no longer be the sole determinant for job provision in today’s Information Age, saying demonstrable skills will.

Delivering the convocation lecture of the Kwara state University (KWASU), Malete, titled, “Learning, Unlearning and Relearning- Prerequisites of the Digital Age”, on Thursday, Professor Oloyede charged Nigerians to get prepared for the challenges of the Information Age by taking lifelong learning seriously and being willing to change as circumstances unfold.

Professor Oloyede, who opined that learning is useless without practice, added that relearning is the ability to acquire new skills, knowledge and perspectives quickly and effectively.

He said: “For all, the imperative of learning, relearning and unlearning cannot be over-emphasised as the tonic that gives vitality to successful living in today’s Information Age. Those who can learn, relearn and unlearn are the successful ones, and those without the mindset that
accommodates the triad are bound to perpetually lament.

“The world of today is totally different from the world inhabited by our forebears. One of the factors responsible for this change is the totality of what makes the Information Age, which is still evolving as technology develops rapidly.

“The changes of the world provide new opportunities and threats. While there are new opportunities in Information Technology, the existing jobs as typists, receptionists, traditional printers, telephone booth operators, computer operators, factory workers, cashiers, travel agents, fuel attendants, among others, are on the verge of extinction.

“New opportunities will emerge in the high tech sector and many skills that were not otherwise thought in traditional schools would be needed. Degrees would no longer be sole guarantors of jobs but demonstrable skills will.

“In this regard, there won’t be any difference between those who are literate and those who are illiterate without the cutting-edge skills that are associated with learning, relearning and unlearning.

“Therefore, the onus of the
responsiblity lies on everyone to get prepared for the challenges of the Information Age by taking lifelong learning seriously and being willing to change as
circumstances unfold.”

Professor Oloyede advised the graduands of the institution to
remember that learning, unlearning, and relearning are the compasses that would guide them in the uncharted territories of the Digital Age.

“These processes are not separate but interwoven elements of a holistic approach to personal and professional developrment. The illiterate of the 21st century, as Alvin Toffler profoundly noted, will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.

“Your ability to embrace these principles will set you apart and
empower you to navigate the challenges and seize the opportunities of our rapidly changing world,” he added.

In his speech, the Acting Vice Chancellor of the KWASU, Professor Shaykh-Luqman Jimoh, said that people live in an era of unprecedented technological advancements, adding that the nation’s educational institutions
must become catalysts for transformation, preparing graduates not just for the challenges of today but for the rapidly evolving landscape of the digital age.

“This lecture cannot be more timely and more relevant in this period when certain knowledge is fast becoming obsolete at an ever- increasing pace. The ability to unlearn outdated concepts and practices, and relearn new ones therefore becomes a crucial skill”, he said.


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