It’s just not over

It will be another demanding time as graduates from various colleges and universities will be attending the annual National Graduates’ Orientation Program starting tomorrow.

The program hasn’t changed much since its inception, except for the fact that more and more numbers of graduates are pouring out of colleges and universities every year.

It’s not different this year too. There are more than 2,200 graduates who have already registered for the program as of now, up by 35% compared to last year.

The number of graduates has been increasing every year, but available jobs or employment both in the government and corporations haven’t changed much.  It has shored up by just few margins or has remained the same.

For the 2,623 graduates who have registered for the civil service preliminary examination, the RCSC has announced 597 vacancies in the civil service this year.

The vacancies have gone up by 146 compared to 451 vacancies last year. While it’s heartening for graduates that there are more vacancies, the additional vacancies, however, are in teaching, technical and professional categories.

It won’t be much daunting for technical graduates to find a job in the civil service as more than half of the vacancies (279) has been earmarked for the technical category, but what about general graduates? The fact is that general graduates hugely surpass technical graduates every year.

Meanwhile, the government has been pompously proclaiming that the unemployment rate at 2.1% is one of the lowest in the world. But what it fails to consider is youth unemployment rate in the country.

Even if it has come down from 9.2% to 7.3%, the number is still huge.  The government’s unemployment rate is an understatement when a chunk of unemployed youth is still loitering on the streets in the capital.

Graduates attending orientation program [photo courtesy- bhutan observer]
Meanwhile, a whooping 2,000 graduates definitely have no choice, either to look for jobs in corporations and private sectors. But how many graduates can the corporations and private sector recruit?

Looking at the present predicament of the economy, even corporations in the country are minimizing expenditures. Their profits have dipped compared to previous years.  Employees are getting laid off if we happen to look at State Trading Corporation of Bhutan’s case.

The situation is no different for the private sector too. The private sector which was envisioned by the government as the engine of economic growth and employment hasn’t changed much either. It’s still weak, fragile, and striving to stay afloat.

Even the prospect for self-employment, entrepreneurship and innovative businesses is bleak with banks suspending all types of loan. It’s definitely not an ideal time to graduate and enter the job market.  More than anything, what graduates need now is a hoard of luck.

[August 12, 2012]

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