Disaster Pit

A person in a disaster pit

Overview

A lot of people are miserably in the disaster pit with most of them blaming evil spirits and politicians. But their blames are misplaced actually. If you meticulously look at what caused these people to fall into this deep disaster pit you can start pointing their rigid fingers to other things which are not related to evil spirits or politicians. In fact in some cases they are themselves to blame. Unfortunately evil spirits and politicians are the most blamed things on this planet. So let us look at the direct causes of falling in this disaster pit. We will look at who is to blame and what to blame later. I exhibit the following diagram to illustrate these direct causes and their effects. Disaster pit

Disaster pit causes

Wrong career choice

Failure to discover your right career at any given period of time will drive you straight to the disaster pit. It doesn’t matter you are a nursery kid, university student or an employee or even an entrepreneur. Wrong career choice prepares a place in the disaster pit. Yes everything maybe going reasonably well but sooner or later the sugarcoated signs and symptoms of being in the disaster pit will start to manifest. As you shall see later in this article wrong career choice is the root of all evil.

Wrong school, trainer, tutor, subjects or course

You have to do the right things with the right school, trainer or tutor. Your kid loves electronics and computers but you send him/her to a school with no computers. You were forced to do commercials at A Level yet you had a successful “science” career path before. You did computer science because that there was no any other vacant degree programme at your university at that time. You should have waited for the right programme for a year rather than wasting 4 years doing a wrong programme. Failure to do the right things with the right school, trainer or tutor makes you slip to the disaster pit.

Failure to pay school fees or meet basic needs

Failure to pay school fees or failure to satisfy basic needs as you are schooling will automatically lead you straight to the disaster pit – no turning point.

Poor communication

Poor communication between your school, trainer or tutor and your family- your parents or guardians in particular- will drive you to the treacherous disaster pit.

Poor results

Poor results are largely a sign and symptom of the above causes. However, lack of seriousness and attention by the students themselves may lead them to fail automatically getting the matching orders to the disaster pit.

Insufficient skills/experience

Insufficient education or training, lack of the required industrial experience, lack of driver’s license and other similar challenges may make you attractive to the disaster pit. Sometimes this is a sign that schools are not in sync with the industry in terms of their curriculum.

Unemployment

In most cases unemployment is a sign and symptom of the above causes including poor results and insufficient skills or experience. However, even a well qualified student may find himself/herself unemployed after graduation. How come this employment fit student is finding himself/herself unemployed? Evil spirits? Politicians? NO! Unfortunately the people who should have employed him/her or partnered with him/her in business are in the disaster pit. The disaster pit is hungry and thirsty for more people including the innocent one. There is a belief that an accident scene is always hungry for more accidents unless and until it is spiritually cleaned by the right religious people.

At work challenges

You may be in the disaster pit even though you are employed. Usually most problems you experience at work are signs and symptoms of being in a disaster pit. Working for a wrong company, underemployment, poor performance at work and retrenchment indicate your place in the disaster pit. Your company’s poor performance, skills become outdated, robots replace you and an unexpected dismissal all relegate you to the disaster pit.

Disaster pit signs and symptoms

Primary signs and symptoms

Dropouts, unemployment, confusion, lack of interest in education, underemployment, poor performance at work, low morale and frustrations.

Secondary signs and symptoms

Premised on the above primary signs and symptoms more churches and political parties will be formed. Many guest houses will be over booked for the wrong reasons. Shrines will be flooded for the wrong reasons. Some people will demonstrate against politicians for the wrong reasons. Some opportunists will emerge to capitalize on the ignorant people.

Disaster Pit Effects

Brain drain- Competent people who were unfortunately dragged in the disaster pit will be forced to leave their adorable country.
Shortage of skills- Due to lack of career guidance, lack of interest in education, dropouts and brain drain companies face massive skill shortages which inevitably makes them uncompetitive and this means little or no business to them ultimately.
Mediocrity- Unmet basic needs and interruptions mainly due to irregular or no school fees payments while at school as well as doing wrong courses or programmes produce half baked or undercooked graduates who bring mediocrity to companies. Finally companies lose competitive edge. Foreign companies will easily exploit this stupid advantage at our huge disadvantages.
Dwindling number of students-Due to lack of interest in education and an ever rising number of dropouts more schools, trainers and tutors will compete for an increasingly declining number of students.
Poor economy due to low demand- Unemployment downward multiplier effects will prevail since most people in the disaster pit have little or no buying power.
NB: It’s not a joke to see someone falling in the disaster pit as this is disastrous to your school, company/employer and the country at large. This disaster pit is catastrophic to everyone.

Two awful habits

There are two wicked habits namely Feed and Forget and Just Feed Me. Interestingly these two atrocious habits have one thing in common: selfishness.

Feed and Forget

Feed and Forget is a situation where schools forget their former students once they leave them. A school will only remember its former student as soon as they heard that he or she is doing spectacularly well academically or professionally and will use that as a reference to attract new students and retain existing students.

Just Feed Me

Just Feed Me is a situation where schools and companies are lazily waiting to be fed with students and skills respectively. For example a primary school is lazily fed with students by an ECD school, a secondary school is lazily fed with students by a primary school, a tertiary institution is lazily fed with students by a high school and companies are lazily fed with skills by schools. Lazy feeding implies the one being fed is doing nothing to create their food.

Who is to blame or what to blame?

It’s time to point fingers. Remember we have exonerated evil spirits and politicians already. Firstly parents, guardians and students are to blame. A good parent or guardian works hard to discover the career of their children at an early stage, send their children to the right schools and make sure they are doing the right things aligned with their career path, pay schools fees and satisfy all basic needs for their children and communicate and interact with the schools, teachers, trainers and tutors of their children, and guide their children to a remarkable success. Unfortunately parents, guardians and students can not be blamed alone. Factors beyond their control may cause their children to be relegated to the disaster pit at any given time. In fact in most cases we can not blame them. Without a solid assistance from the industry and schools, parents and guardians will still watch helplessly as their lovely children fall in the merciless disaster pit.

Career guidance challenges

Companies are desperately looking for skills yet they are not doing anything significant to nurture them. To make matters worse most companies are only concerned about getting (current) customers. They believe skills are abundant due to high unemployment yet in actual fact quality skills are rare. Proper career guidance is lacking. Companies are almost doing nothing to guide students and enthuse them to seek education. Consequently companies face massive skill shortages and low demand of their products.

When career guidance is lacking schools end up selling their subjects, programmes or courses as mere products to increase their revenues. Schools must act like pharmacies. Pharmacies sell medicines as prescribed by qualified medical doctors. Imagine a pharmacy randomly selling its medicines to everyone just to clear its stock. That’s what some schools are doing. Instead of allowing their students to choose subjects, programmes or courses based on their passion, interest and career choice as prescribed by their career mentors schools are recklessly selling their offerings. The worst crime being committed by companies is to hide their occupations. Companies only display an occupation to the public when advertising a job. Yet job advertising by companies is done sparingly and rarely.

Moreover the jargon of advertising is in some cases not student friendly. Most employment details on the social media, if there are there, are inauthentic, incomplete, overstated or awkward especially for students, parents or guardians. As a result students, parents and guardians are limited to popularized or family related careers. No wonder if you ask any kid about their future career you will hear jobs such as president, doctor, nurse, teacher, soldier, (traffic) police officer and prophet. Information hiding by companies has adversely affected them more than students, parents, guardians and employees.

The right school, trainer or tutor- a needle in a haystack

The right schools, trainers and tutors are difficult to find nowadays given the rising number of schools, trainers and tutors. Schools, trainers and tutors are not positioning themselves very well as a result students, parents and guardians miss them. Finding schools, trainers or tutors through your networks or based on past history may not be the best for you or your child as some may not be suitable for your or your child’s career path and peculiarities. Some schools which used to be arguably the best in the past are unnoticeably regressing. Moreover the best school in academics does not always mean that it is the right school for your child or yourself. The word “best” is always subject to scrutiny in the education sector.

Poor communication

There is poor communication between parents, guardians and schools, trainers or tutors. The communication frameworks, protocols and tools they use are irrelevant, ineffective and inefficient.

Scholarship problems

Solo scholarships
I really appreciate the efforts being made by our Government and a handful of companies, schools and individuals to give help to students in form of scholarships and other means. But the myth is that scholarships are only provided by Government and big companies with big budgets. Yet if all companies, schools and individual donors regardless of size combine their contributions in assisting a student in need at any given time many more students can be assisted.
Planned scholarships
While planned scholarships by Government, companies and schools are not necessarily bad we believe scholarship givers must favor unplanned scholarships over planned scholarships. At any given time a student may fail to pay school fees and meet basic needs and it is the duty of the entire community to prevent this student from falling in the disaster pit due to an eventuality.
Output based scholarships

Scholarship givers must favor efficiency based scholarships over output based scholarships. Let me explain these two scholarships with an example. Let’s say there are three orphaned ZIMSEC O Level students Dudzai, Nhamo and Rufaro doing the same subjects. Dudzai stays in a remote rural area with her three young sisters. Dudzai is virtually on her own and she crosses three crocodile infested rivers on a 7km journey to her school. Unsurprisingly, she is struggling to pay school fees and she is on and off to school. Nhamo stays with his benevolent aunt who is a teacher at a growth point school where Nhamo is schooled. Rufaro is at a well funded school Hunherera Hushe orphanage secondary school and at least her orphanage is managing to pay school fees and meet basic needs for her.

Then come results time Dudzai scores 6Bs and 3Cs, Nhamo scores 5As, 2Bs and 2Cs, and Rufaro scores 2As, 4Bs and 3Cs. An output based scholarship donor will choose Nhamo but an efficiency based scholarship donor may want to choose Dudzai. To be honest giving a scholarship to Nhamo instead of Dudzai is just like giving conglatulations to Nhamo for being fortunate. Dudzai has proved to do more with less. She is likely to become a better leader than any of the other two. In fact if the three of them were to form companies I think Dudzai’s company was likely to thrive the most. Just like life business is about how to manage stress, adversity and competition. No wonder why most long time students of my former high school, Harare High School, were afraid of students who were coming from rural areas to do A level at that school. Despite their seemingly mediocre O Level results such overlooked students would emerge highest at A Level.

Long term scholarships
Some of the few scholarship givers we have, some companies in particular, give long term scholarships to students. A long term scholarship is when a scholarship donor supports the student for a long period of time for example from ECD to university. While this is not necessarily bad there are two challenges with it. Firstly there is an insecurity challenge here as we think what will happen to the student if the scholarship giver goes bankrupt or broke along the way. Secondly, the supported student may deliberately start to perform poorly at school knowing that he/she has got a long term scholarship. A renewed scholarship especially when offered collectively by multiple scholarship givers is better than a long term monopolized scholarship.
Formal education scholarships
Scholarship givers tend to focus on formal education only. No room for non formal education education scholarships such as vocational training scholarship, driver’s license scholarships and professional course scholarships. Yet vocational training, driving training and professional training play a pivotal role in lifting a person out of the disaster pit.
Discipline biased scholarships
Some scholarship sponsors or programmes are biased towards a certain discipline as they try to promote students to enroll for that discipline. We firmly believe that every discipline whether arts, commercials or sciences is equally important. Proper career guidance by companies in collaboration with education and training providers is the only way to attract the right students to do the right thing and excel in their chosen area. Scholarships or money must not be used to lure students to venture in a certain discipline but rather used to facilitate efficient career guided students to learn.
Age biased scholarships
Lastly on the issue of scholarships, scholarship givers tend to favor young students. But I really challenge this mentality. Everyone regardless of age is a student by default. Many people young and old who are in the disaster would like your help to get out of the disaster pit. Give everyone an equal chance to start or restart their life. Don’t discriminate students on the basis of age. With a bit of a new skill or education those old ones you are discriminating may bring wonders to our economy within a short period of time given their wealth of experience, foundation skills and wisdom.

The Solution

FundoLinker to the rescue. FundoLinker connects students to their education community for better education and employment opportunities. FundoLinker brings together schools, trainers, tutors, companies, students, parents, guardians and compassionate crowd donors to create a trusted self sustained education network that can help the education community grow, shine and succeed. FundoLinker and the FundoLinker community prevents any person from falling in the disaster pit while helping people to get out of the disaster pit, dust off and reboot their education and professional lives.

Career discovery

Companies are given a platform to display all their departments and occupations as part of career guidance in a way that is understandable by students, parents and guardians. Companies regularly offer career guidance to students and give shrewd advices to schools. Our advice to companies: Feed students and their schools with career knowledge and advices before they feed you with their skills and purchasing power. Career prospects of programmes or courses can be easily linked to the industry. Conversely we can link any occupation with its relevant programmes or courses. Such linkages give live information that can guide any student when choosing a career. With FundoLinker students can pursue jobs as per their interests and set a goal for their lives.

Finding and discovering schools, trainers and tutors

Parents, guardians and students can effortlessly find and discover any school, trainer or tutor of their choice anytime. Features such as Around Me, enhanced 360 degree profiles and Visible Plus Plus are meant to assist parents, guardians and students to find a school, trainer or tutor based on their criteria.

Scholarships anytime

Imagine companies, school, trainers, tutors and crowd donors collectively assisting a student in need at any given time. FundoLinker community scholarships strictly follow the following guidelines. Favor collective scholarships over solo scholarships. Favor unplanned scholarships over planned scholarships. Favor short term scholarships over long term scholarships. Favor efficiency based scholarships over output based scholarships. Don’t discriminate students especially on the basis of age and sector. Include unusual scholarships such as driver’s license scholarships, vocational training scholarships, professional course scholarships, semester accommodation scholarships and O Level registration scholarships. FundoLinker enables your former school to team up with other schools, companies and individual donors to help you finish your education and training in form of recommendations and financial support.

Communication and interaction

FundoLinker proudly offers managed and structured communication frameworks, tools and protocols that respect the dignity, discipline and culture of the education community. Companies, schools, trainers and tutors can send their communication to students and customers through announcements, events, news and publication articles. Companies, schools, trainers and tutors can get feedback from students, parents, guardians and customers to see what they are they good at and what they need to improve on. Students, parents and guardians can ask companies, captains and veterans of industries (serving and retired), coaches, schools, trainers and tutors about careers to pursue and subjects, courses and programmes to do any time.

Connection with the industry for student positions

Students and schools are offered a real time connection with the industry for internship, apprentice, graduate trainee and other positions.
At FundoLinker we are assembling technology and humanity to help students discover or rediscover their career anytime, find and discover the right school, trainer or tutor anytime, get scholarships anytime, communicate and interact with companies, schools, trainer and tutors anytime and connect with the industry for apprentice, internship, graduate trainee and other positions.

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