Tuesday, February 1, 2011

At Anthony Village Lagos, with SRD Alumni

29th January 2011
Opening Comments
The focus group discussion hosted by AGDC Employability & Enterprise Devt Ltd/GTE had in attendance 6 (Six) participants of the Samsung Real Dreams from streams 3&4, 5 and 6. In attendance was: Toyin Ademodi; an unemployed mother of two; Olugbosun Ariyo, a software developer; Ademoye Ayoola Damilola, a Lecturer; Olusunmade Kazeem, a school administrator; Saka Adedayo Saheed, a content developer for educational software and Ajanaku Collins, a fresh graduate and an entrepreneur. This corps of discussants selected across different streams spoke candidly on the SRD Programme, its impacts and fall-outs. They also suggested other intervention points in combating youth employability in Nigeria.
On the profiling Test
Saka: ‘The career profiling test was fantastic’; Toyin corroborated by asserting: ‘it brought out things about me I never knew anybody else could see”.
According to Damilola; a lot of people were nervous about taking the career test. People felt it was a trick assignment to sieve out people that would be placed on internship. For Stream 3&4 there was so much competition. The psychometric test was not a true test of our abilities
Samsung Real Dreams: Impacts and Complaints
For Damilola ‘What I would say about the SRD Class is that I have made lifelong friends; I have a friend living with me presently, we met at the SRD training and he has been living in my house for more than a year!
For Toyin Ajimobi: The issue with SRD is that what I learnt most was about team building. People revealed an inner strength of character in such a manner that I was amazed. People really have unseen potentials”
Through the training I received at AGDC, I have developed a great deal of confidence.
Suggestions for AGDC
Collins advices; AGDC should please work on placing all trainees on internships. Also, an endowment fund can be established to fund a microcredit scheme; the focus should not be on graduates only but also on NCE and OND graduates and entrepreneurs
Damilola; “the niche for AGDC is on developing people’s mindset”.
Hakeem: ‘AGDC cannot teach people everything but each training is a seed. The SRD training was really an eye-opener’.
AGDC needs to ignite the initial push in entrepreneurs, (at this time Saka interrupts; what do you mean by initial push? Business writing skills?
Hakeem; I mean, inspiring us to break the fear of starting; to take initiative.

Graduation Ceremony
Hakeem”; a graduation ceremony is necessary, I once went for an interview and they requested for a proof of my attendance of the training, which I couldn’t provide. We need our certificates.”
Lessons Learnt
“I learnt a lot about project planning and implementation and how to excel at any task given to me. Before SRD, I didn’t have confidence in myself, but learning about personal branding at the SRD training programme, changed my perception of myself”.
Hakeem:” The first thing I learnt at the SRD was self confidence, especially when I was asked to pray. Also, I learnt fresh presentation skills. When I got back to my teaching job, even the student testified of a change in my teaching style. Also, from Mrs Ibukun Awosika, I learnt a lot about integrity and values”.
Final Word for AGDC:
Hakeem: “There is a sort of pride in Nigerian youth; every Nigerian graduate has a mindset issue. It is not all about the grades. AGDC operates in an environment that has little or no value for its younger generation. Thus, AGDC must thus define the age category for its catchment population; there should be a certain age strata and focus should be on developing their potentials.’ AGDC Also needs government support and the best way to do it is to design a project to coincide with government objectives.


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