04 April 2012

Some Alternatives To Summer Jobs


The Department of Labor and Employment with the participation of several private companies is currently implementing provisions of RA. 7323 entitled, “An Act to Help Poor But Deserving Students Pursue their Education By Encouraging their Employment During Summer and/or Christmas Vacations.” Under this law, employers pay only sixty percent (60%) of their salaries while the 40% is shouldered by the government and paid through Edu-cation Vouchers.
The objective of the program is to help poor but deserving students to pursue their education by providing them employment during summer and/or Christmas vaca¬tions so that they will have income to finance/augment/subsidize their studies..

The youth who would like to join the program may apply to any DOLE Regional/District/ Provincial Office, Public Employment Service Office or other deputized entities as long as they are 15-21 years old, enrolled during the present school year immediately preceding the summer vacation, has obtained a passing grade and their parents income after tax does not exceed P36,000.
To date, there are already multinationals who have announced the hiring of more than 3000 applications to work on their nationwide branches.
Unfortunately, if we want to measure the success of this pro¬gram, participated by many compnies as part of their CSR program, the only basis of evaluation would be the number of students that were taken in. The quality as well as the benefits to the individual students is put on the side. As some 400,000 students will graduate this year and will probably add to the statistics on unemployment, why cant we device a program that will make these graduates see other options to help them prepare for their future. A good example would be to train them as young entrepre¬neurs and gain the experience that will impact on their lives on a long term basis.
To make these summer jobs more meaningful, the participants may be deployed by companies on their sale, service or operations department where they see practi¬cal applications of sales, marketing and even finance theories rather than keep them in the office doing menial jobs like filing and records keeping, or doing repetitive func¬tions in a department for the dura¬tion of their contract.
As an option, the subsidy can be coursed through grants to enroll in short summer courses especially those offered by TESDA or Meralco Foundation. This I believe would be more productive and will prepare the individual for entrepreneurial activities in the future.
Students can also group them¬selves and pool whatever resources they have and engage in buying and selling interesting products the community can patronize. For example, they can put up their own barbeque stand or branded bottled water which they can source from an existing water refilling sta¬tions.
There are a lot of alternatives to the usual summer jobs and OJT. Do something with what can help the students on a long-term basis. Paraphrasing Robert Kobayashi – “we have always been prodded by our parents to go to a good school, get good grades and be employed with a good company after gradu¬ation.” Why not say instead – “go to a good school, get good grades and put up your own company after graduation?”
Use summer to learn entrepre¬neurship which pays well in the long run. Learn this early . Enjoy it later!
By TEODORO P. ESTACIO
MB.COM.PH

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