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Morocco Turns to Training to Tackle Youth Joblessness [Magharebia]

Morocco is hoping to use a combination of education and vocational training to combat youth unemployment:

magharebia

Workers are seen at the Dacia-Sandero workshop in the Samoca factory in Casablanca. Photo: AFP/Abdelhak Senna.

Workers are seen at the Dacia-Sandero workshop in the Samoca factory in Casablanca. Photo: AFP/Abdelhak Senna.

Morocco is preparing a new vocational training strategy to improve the way young people are integrated into the labor market.

The plan is to ensure better social integration for young people and to meet the economic demand from business, according to Abdelâdim El Guerrouj, the minister delegate responsible for vocational training.

It is also a matter of preparing young people properly to complete their training successfully and helping them discover their vocation, he told l’Economiste on October 8th.

To encourage young people to opt for the courses, there are plans to set up a gateway into higher education, to enable graduates to access higher degree courses and engineering and business school courses.

Many young people are reticent about embarking on a vocational training course because of the lack of prospects following higher education, with vocational training reaching a plateau two years after the baccalaureate.

Jamil Chanbi, 17, is sitting his baccalaureate this year. He thought twice about taking a vocational training course because he always hoped to take higher education to an advanced level. This year he changed his view, and intends to pursue job training.

“Thanks to the new agreement with the higher education ministry, I shall still have the opportunity to continue my studies or to work. It has to be said that university studies do not open the way to the job market,” he told Magharebia.

Many others, like Jamil, want to avoid taking the university route because of the high level of unemployment among graduates. Moreover, even those with university degrees are now turning to vocational training to find a job. That is the case with Hamid Jebli, 28, who has a law degree.

He was unemployed for two years before deciding to go for professional training in business management, which enabled him to land a job at a company straight after getting his diploma.

“Some of my friends are still out of work because they didn’t go into vocational training. The private sector rejects university graduates out of hand, without even finding out how good their skills are. Even requests for work placements go unanswered. But the vocational training diploma has credibility among employers,” he said.

His friend Hamza Cherrat, who has been unemployed for six years now, commented that the government needed to work on businesses to get them to open their doors to university graduates. That would mean graduates had a chance of a placement without needing intermediaries or resorting to cronyism or other similar tactics, he added.

Economist Chamil Brahim took a similar line, saying that companies have a civic duty to open up to universities, while the government should put incentives in place for the private sector to encourage the recruitment of new graduates into the world of work.

Even vocational training needs to diversify in order to satisfy the needs of business as well as it possibly can, the economist added. Research will be needed on the subject if that objective is to be reached, so that new courses can be created and pupils and students can be put on the right track, Brahim said…[Original Story]

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