London academy business school to empower Nigerian youths with relevant skills
The London Academy Business School says it is bringing the University of Sunderland to Nigeria to empower Nigerian youths with relevant skills.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the school, Dr Larry Jones-Esan announced this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday.
Jones-Esan said this was in a bid to bridge the gap between job opportunities and the skills possessed by Nigerian graduates.
“This initiative aims to equip Nigerian youths with the relevant skills needed to thrive in the country’s job market.
“It is no secret that oil and gas companies operating in Nigeria have to continuously apply for expatriate quotas to bring in thousands of foreign workers.
“This situation arises due to the mismatch between the skills possessed by Nigerian graduates and the job requirements in the industry,” he said.
According to Jones-Esan, in spite of the presence of over 250,000 oil and gas jobs in Nigeria, many Nigerian graduates pursue degrees in fields such as Library Science, Linguistics, Sociology, Philosophy, and Political Science.
He explained that these courses have limited relevance to the country’s job market.
“This mismatch has led to a situation where foreigners are often hired to fill positions that could have been occupied by qualified Nigerian candidates.
“For instance, renowned companies like Chevron, Total, and Elf have resorted to bringing in non-graduates with technical skills from countries like France to perform jobs that Nigerian graduates could have easily handled with the right training.
“The consequences of this mismatch are far – reaching. For example, when Aliko Dangote, Africa’s richest man, built a $19.5 billion refinery, he faced a significant challenge in finding 11,000 technicians to operate it.
“This scarcity of skilled technicians was primarily due to the fact that many Nigerian graduates held degrees in fields such as Botany and Philosophy, which were not directly applicable to the technical requirements of the refinery,” Jones-Esan said.
He said that Dangote had to import technicians from India to fill these positions.
Jones-Esan said that the London Academy Business School, recognising the urgent need to address this issue, partnered with the University of Sunderland to bring quality education and training programmes to Nigeria.
He said the initiative would empower Nigerian youths to acquire the necessary skills and knowledge to excel in industries such as oil and gas, technology, engineering, and other sectors critical to the country’s economic growth.
According to Jones-Esan, by offering courses that are directly applicable to the job market, the University of Sunderland’s presence in Nigeria will help address the mismatch between job opportunities and the skills possessed by Nigerian graduates.
The CEO urged Nigerian youths to seize the opportunity and take advantage of the programmes offered by the University of Sunderland in Nigeria.
Jones-Esan said that acquiring relevant skills would make Nigerian graduates better positioned to secure well-paying jobs and contribute to the country’s economic development.
He urged Nigerians to visit www.labs.org.uk for opportunities the school offered to the youths.