A challenge can be referred to as a ‘difficult task’. It is something that requires great physical and mental effort to be done successfully and thus tests a person’s ability (Cambridge University Press 2017). In this study, the term ‘challenge’ refers to that which tests graduates’ abilities to succeed in life despite various tasks situation they have faced with, that needs great mental or physical effort in order to be done successfully and therefore tests the post graduate student’s ability. Farhana, Muhammad & Naseer (2018) enumerated different types of challenges faced by postgraduate students which include, situational, academic and unemployment challenges.
Cross (2011) pointed out that the situational challenges arise from one‘s situation or environment at a given point. These challenges hamper a learner‘s ability to access and pursue learning opportunities (MacKeracher, Suart & Potter, 2006). Challenges of these natures include financial, family and time management challenges.
Academic Challenges and fear of Unemployment
Academic challenges are related to the factors that are crucial to the process of teaching and learning. They include problems in teaching and learning oral expression and written expression, computer-related skills, critical and reflective skills, examinations and tests. The participants of the study have identified three main themes- instructors ‘role, poor communication skills and curriculum in the study. Literature review has also identified two barriers which are pedagogical and unemployment after the completion of their academic program. Pedagogical barriers are due to instructors, facilitators and administrators’ lack of understanding about learner-centered teaching, active learning, different learning style (MacKeracher, Suart & Potter, 2006).
Concepts of Unemployment
The fear of getting a job is a major challenge for postgraduate student. Unemployment describes the condition of people who are without jobs. International labor organization (ILO) defines the unemployed as numbers of the economically active population who are without work but available for and seeking for job, including people who have lost their jobs and those who have voluntarily left work (Work Bank1998:63), also Adebayo (1999) stated that unemployment exist when members of the labor force wish to work but cannot get jobs. According to Oyebade (2003), Nigeria’s unemployed can be grouped in to two categories: first older unemployed who lost their jobs through redundancy or bankruptcy and second the younger unemployed, most whom have never been employed. According to Awongbenle and Iwumadi (2010), the statistics from theman power board and federal Bureau Statistics showed that Nigeria has a youth population of 80 million, representing 60% of the total population of the country, also 64 million of them are unemployed, while 1.6 million are under-employed. However, unemployment is one of the major challenges that youth experience in Nigeria, and this has drastic impacts on youths because of the societal expectation.
Saptakee (2001) defined graduate unemployment as a kind of unemployment amongst people with academic degrees. In other words, graduate unemployment could be seen as a condition in which graduate job seekers are without a job. Fajana (2000) describes graduate unemployment as a state of joblessness experienced by persons who are members of the labour force, who perceive themselves and are perceived by others as capable of working. Otobo (2012) categorises graduate unemployment’s into two: graduates who have never worked since graduation, and graduates who have lost their jobs, seeking re-entry into the labour market. Empirical researches indicate that unemployment is a devastating phenomenon in the lives of graduates, and appears to be a definite indicator of institutions’ ineffectiveness and malfunctioning.
Unemployment has been categorized as one of the serious impediments to economic progress. University graduates are denied legitimate means of livelihood and grow up in a culture that encourages criminal behaviors. It represents a colossal waste of a country’s manpower resources and generates welfare loss in terms of lower output thereby leading to lower income and poor well-being. Unemployment leads to psychological problems, frustration, depression, and hostility criminal behaviors, prostitution, touting, debt, poverty and other consequences of Unemployment among Nigerian graduates. Unemployment can be defined as a situation in which people who are willing to work at the prevailing wage rate are unable to find jobs. Graduates are intelligent and creative people with the ability to think critically (Gareth, 2011), and who compete for job in the domestic and global labor market places. Graduate unemployment imposes socio-economic costs; it is a waste of manpower resources, the investment in education and training is unused.
Concept of Graduate Unemployment
Unemployment is not peculiar to Nigeria. In the analysis of unemployment, the International Labor Organization,(ILO,2011) explained that “between 2008 and 2010, unemployment rates among developed nations jumped from 8.8 percent to 12.5 percent for people with less than high school education; and from 4.9% to 7.6% for people with only a high school education. For those with equivalent of university degree or more, the jobless rate went from 3.3% to just 4.7%”.
The damaging feature of Nigerian economy is graduate unemployment, It remains one of the most pressing challenges facing the country at the moment. As a result, Nigeria is experiencing spate of violence due to idling hands, brain drain, low economic productivity, as well as decrease in actual Gross National Product (GNP). The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS, 2013) report indicates that over 150,000 graduates were produced by tertiary institutions in 2013, against an employment rate of 12.3 percent. Equally, data from NBS, (2013) suggests that two-thirds of universities graduates are not gainfully employed. This has had tremendous negative effects on the graduates in particular and the Nigerian economy in general.