Ched lists priority courses

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Sunday, March 30, 2014


JOB mismatch has always been a dilemma among college graduates here in the Philippines. It is also a dilemma among incoming college students because of the fear of not being able to land a job after they finish their baccalaureate degree or if they do, then they might get a job far different from what they have studied.

In an effort to end job mismatch in the country, the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) came up with list of priority courses in tertiary education that students might want to take.

Based on Ched’s website through chairperson Patricia Licuanan, the identified priority courses will help cope with the growing gap between the skills of the graduates and the available jobs in the market.

The priority courses were bared after an inter-agency meeting on September 30 and October 24, 2013 with representatives from Department of Labor and Employment (Dole), National Economic and Development Authority (Neda), Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges (Pasuc), Philippine Association of Colleges and Universities (Pacu) and in view of the Commission en Banc Resolution No. 872-2013 Dated December 4, 2013.

Ched has consolidated with the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) through its labor market study and identified courses that would help fill the hard-to-fill jobs and identify those in-demand jobs.

These are the priority courses for SY 2014-2015 to SY 2017-2018 in accordance with the pertinent provisions of the Republic Act No. 7722 or Higher Education Act of 1992:

-Information Technology (information technology and computing studies, multi media, animation, programming, computer science and information system management)

-Agriculture and related fields (agro-forestry, veterinary medicine, agricultural engineering, agribusiness/management, agricultural entrepreneurship, agri-tech, agriculture, fisheries)

-Teacher Education major in math, science, physics, chemistry, reading, English, educational media/technology and special education (SPED)

-Science and Math (BS Math, BS Science and BS Physics)

-Engineering (mechanical, electronics, communication, metallurgical/mining, computer, biomedical, chemical, geodetic, electrical, meteorological, mining and geological)
-Health Sciences (pharmacy, radiology technology, medical technology)

-Arts and Humanities; Atmospheric Science; and Environmental Science.

-Health Sciences (Pharmacy, Radiology Technology, Medical Technology, Physical Therapy, BS Nutrition)

-Social and Behavioral Sciences (BS Psychology, BS Social Work, Human Development, Guidance and Counseling)

-Business Administration and related courses (BS Accountancy, Business Data Outsourcing, Business Process Outsourcing, Construction Management, Tourism)

-Architecture (BS Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Interior Design, Environmental Planning, Fine Arts, Urban Planning)

-Maritime (BS Marine Transportation)

-Communication (BA Communication, BA Journalism, BA Broadcasting, BS Development Communication)

-Others (to be determined by the Region)

The said priority courses will also be the focus of Ched for their Students Financial Assistance Program (STuFAP) beneficiaries and that all who will apply to Stufap are compelled to take one of those courses identified by Ched.

Stufap is a mandate of Ched as provided for in Article XIV, Section 1 of the Philippine Constitution, “to protect and promote the right of all citizens to quality education at all levels and shall take appropriate steps to make such education accessible to all,” wherein a scholarship shall be granted to deserving students in both private and public schools, especially to the underprivileged.

Various teachers in the Davao City also agree with the priority courses identified by Ched.

In an interview with Sun.Star Davao, mass communication instructor of Jose Maria College Mark Naretto said that the priority courses of Ched is a big help to address the job mismatch in the country.

Naretto said that students should be aware of the needs of the industries today to address job mismatch.

“Ched and Dole has been helping hand in hand to solve the problem of job mismatch but students should also bear in mind that they should adapt to the changes in the labor force. Students should be sensitive enough on what courses to take and be able to adjust accordingly to the needs of the companies,” he added.

Shieba Magno meanwhile, a Nihonggo Professor of Mindanao Kokusai Daigaku believes that students nowadays should venture into courses that suit their interest and at the same time will earn them a career after college.

“If they go to courses that don't really interest them, there is a possibility that they will not become productive in that field. Also, since a typical Filipino needs a job after graduation to support the family, it would be better if that particular course will cater them a job,” Magno said.

She added that there are lots of options that incoming college students should consider when deciding what course to take in college.

“We don’t need to depend on what courses other people are taking in college. A lot of courses are already congested and it is high time for students to take a new path,” she said.

She said that International Studies for instance, which she took up in college is one of those courses that have not reached its maximum appreciation among students yet it can offer various jobs.

“There are lots of opportunities for International Studies (I.S.) graduates and I am one of those who benefited from the course. I.S. graduates can become a Nihongo teacher, English teacher in Japan, interpreter, translator, tour guide, diplomat, ambassador and the like,” she said.

She said that there will be no job mismatch if only students match their courses with the demands of the society.

Senator Benigno “Bam” Aquino meanwhile said in a press statement recently that to address job mismatch, business companies should relax their educational requirements when hiring employees for their current job vacancies.

He said that he will make a proposal for applicants who have no college degree but possess the necessary skills to also be considered by the companies during the hiring process.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 31, 2014.

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