Today, Kyrgyzstan can rightly be proud of a stratum of young and relatively young people (in the age range between 25-33 years old) who have achieved success in various spheres of life. Someone managed to promote a business, someone makes a career in the public service or in private structures, someone has achieved recognition in some creative profession, and so on. Their standard of living is generally higher than the national average, which is already perceived as a significant achievement, given the age. This part of society declares itself a creative activity, confirming the well-known axiom that the future belongs to young people, although to some extent the present already belongs to them.
Sociologists have not yet calculated the approximate number of this very prominent stratum, but even without official data it is clear that it is insignificant for all young people, who make up 40% (two million) of the country's population. For the majority of representatives of the “new generation” of Kyrgyzstan, the ascent up the career ladder is still a distant perspective, although there is a reserve for updating personnel. This was recognized by the head of state Kurmanbek Bakiyev at the celebration of the Republic’s Youth Day, held in late November last year.
“We are accustomed to appointing politicians over 50 years old to senior positions because we are not sure that the young inexperienced specialist will cope with the work,” he said. “But I think we have to take risks, since young people have new approaches and something completely different.” thinking unlike us. Every third young Kyrgyzstani today has a higher education. In terms of the number of universities, we are ahead of many states of Central Asia, but, paradoxically, there is a serious personnel shortage in relation to young people in the republic.
- The trouble is that nobody works with graduates and future university graduates. The education system is set up only to provide knowledge to the young man and handing over the “crust”; tomorrow, the alma mater doesn’t care for the pet outside the walls, ”said Muzaffar Kazakov, head of the project at the Marketing and Career Development Center of the Osh Kyrgyz-Uzbek University.
Such a center, seriously thinking about the fate of university graduates, is the only one in the southern region of the republic, which has a higher level of unemployment. In the first months of work, the center’s employees saw as their main task the employment of university graduates and the urban youth who turn to them for help. Contact was established with potential employers and a Career Day was organized, which allowed dozens of young people to find a job. This event also revealed another problem - the compliance of candidates with the requirements of organizations that promised promising positions. The guests were not interested in diplomas, they were looking for proactive personalities with independent thinking and skills, as well as those who were able to present their skills, abilities and experience. Those found only a few.
“The result forced us to reach a higher quality level of relations with partners-employers, to develop effective forms of cooperation with them,” the source continues. - We carefully study the criteria for selection of personnel and at the center we organize seminars, courses that help draw attention to the acquisition and development of certain skills, open up to the person from the creative side. Among students we organize competitions for internships in successful business structures. The employer also wins, having noticed the promising young man, of course, he tries not to lose him. We already have students with whom business companies have signed contracts.
Included in this process and individual faculties of the university. Olga Gladkova, Senior Lecturer at the UNESCO Chair, created the Leader makers group, which included students who wanted to learn how to develop leadership skills in themselves.
Enthusiasts understand that their strength is not enough to turn the tide in the system of higher education of the republic, which produces personnel today, the quality of whose knowledge does not meet the expectations of the business.
- Sometimes university graduates who have a rough idea of the acquired specialty, unfamiliar with modern technology, apply. I have to refuse them recommendations, offering to learn another profession in courses organized by me, ”said Altynbek Abdrakmanov, chairman of the Osh public association Agla-Adis, which deals with the employment of young people.
“The need for changes in the training of specialists required by today's market should be realized, first of all, by the teaching staff of universities,” emphasizes Boris Kubaev, rector of the Bishkek Institute of Information Technologies and Advanced Training. - The administrative corps of higher education, which failed to show flexibility and mobility in market conditions, needs retraining. It is necessary to study university management.
“The key role in solving this problem is given to the emerging Career Centers of universities, which should, among other functions, take on themselves an educational function in preparing graduates for a successful career start in the first years of study at the institute,” said Shakirath Toktosunova, Executive Director of the Eurasia Foundation in Central Asia.
The Eurasia Foundation of Central Asia and the EdNet Association of Educational Institutions offered their assistance by implementing a number of activities and programs aimed at training qualified personnel of the Career Centers in five other universities of the republic. It's too early to talk about the results of their activities. So far, with regret, we have to admit that today, not only the university, but also the entire state system is not set up to capture talents, it is insensitive to such qualities of cadres as honesty and education. Between the old generation of real professionals and the new gaping giant hole, which is filled with random human material.
Attempts by the country's leadership to change the situation with the employment of young people turned out to be ineffective. The youth labor exchanges created at the city branches of the state committee on migration and employment of the population without financial support began to curtail their activities. The national program “Kyrgyzstan Zhashtary” adopted at the beginning of last year, which provided for the revision of personnel policy in relation to young people, which raised the problems of the outflow of young personnel from the country, the lack of youth ideology, is stalled. The initiative, proposed by representatives of the youth elite at a meeting with the president of the country, to establish an institute for training young people in Kyrgyzstan, at the stage of consideration and when its actual implementation begins is unknown.