Higher education not meeting demand

2012-06-05 20:39

Johannesburg - Higher education systems in Southern Africa are not growing to meet the demands of the burgeoning youth population, deputy higher education minister Professor Hlengiwe Mkhize said on Tuesday.

"We do not have enough institutions of higher education and training, despite the new public and private institutions which have been built in various countries in the region over the last two decades."

She was speaking at the extra-ordinary SADC meeting of higher education ministers, aimed at reviving higher education and training in the region.

She said the region did not have adequate numbers of well-qualified academic personnel.

"In South Africa only 33% of our academics have Phd qualifications, " she said.

She said the country depended on these academics alone to produce research output, and to supervise masters and doctoral students.

Higher education ministers discussed how to develop a joint plan for the region at the meeting in Johannesburg.

"The ultimate objective is to develop a higher education and training plan for the region through discussions on the status and challenges of the sector...," said Education Minister Blade Nzimande's spokesperson, Vuyelwa Qinga.

At the meeting, the Southern African Regional University Association (Sarua) submitted a presentation on access and participation rates, including the role of private institutions.

"Out of these discussions, the policy vision for the region will be translated into a regional strategic framework... which will outline key priorities for both the short and long terms," Qinga said.

The implementation of these decisions would be undertaken by the technical committee on higher education, training, research and development, she said.

  • Lynda - 2012-06-05 21:07

    Do what they did in the UK and turn all the Techs and Colleges into Universities

  • Themba - 2012-06-05 21:09

    Also academic institutions tend to focus on research that is largely not relevant in the societies in which they operate in.My worry is also with lack of job opportunities as well as qualifications that are not line with required economic growth. There is also tendency to resist succession planning at work place until it is too late. It takes time to groom an individual.

      TheGoat - 2012-06-18 08:15

      Research that isnt relevant like what exactly? Science, Medicine, Archaeology? Engineering?

  • Mike Purchase - 2012-06-05 22:28

    And minister you dont know what to do about.

  • Keith - 2012-06-06 06:16

    How can Business absorb thousands of academically trained young people? There is an unfulfilled need for trained artisans.

      pat.pugheparry - 2012-06-06 06:53

      Hear hear.

      Alf - 2012-06-09 15:18

      South Africa is an exception - here people need jobs and get paid for something that does not involve a dirty word like WORK! Our institutions for higher education churn out academics that cannot spell their own names. No surprise there-our Minister of Higher Education is a Wizard at games like "pass the bottle"!

  • Garth - 2012-06-06 07:19

    So here is the logic: They will insist on advancing previously disadvantaged people into position of authority who themselves lack the experience, so then that lack of experience simply gets passed on to the next set of aspiring minds! Scrap quotas and allow the best minds lead, no matter what their colour!

  • Loo - 2012-06-06 09:06

    Treating the symptoms and not the problem is going to make it all collapse. The biggest employer is small business, yet those same small businesses get driven into the ground by Personal and company tax, not even to speak of the labour law. Same time government says, Black and White should work together and create employment while our economy grows by 2% pa. Inflation is actually round 15%.RSA borrows 27-30% of the National budget against a growth of 2%.Government tells the West to fly a kite and side with Bric countries, yet Govt, cans a Multi Billion dollar investment deal on Telkom with same Bric member Korea (govt owns over 50% of Telkom rem). Govt calls for stringer BEE, ie. Take away water from a biggish tree (employing lots of people) to water a small tree which will boom and go under in 5 years due to lack of business skills . All that happens is the small tree absorb the people employed by the previous company that went bank, and when the small tree go bank, the cycle repeats (So no new jobs actually). You can fit all the farmers feeding this country into Ellis-PArk, yet they want to disown them for political reasons and make the farms go to waste (Its happening as we speak, the proof is there). MY point you would ask. GOVT. Listen up .. MONEY does not give a s**t about the history,racism,emotions or culture. AND yes (this might be a shock to you) YOU the Govt. NEED money to achieve your goals. Even if you disown all the whites in this country, it will solve nothing

  • Mazimba - 2012-06-06 11:13

    We don't even have enough functioning high schools, minister. Fix the foundation!

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