Study on employability of mechanical engineering graduates from Sunyani Technical University of Ghana
Although the Government of Ghana gives considerable attention to technical education to accelerate national development, some graduates remain unemployed for years after graduation. In this study, employability of mechanical engineering graduates from Sunyani Technical University of Ghana is presented. It assessed the employment status and duration of unemployment of the graduates, identified the factors that hinder their employability and the challenges that require attention prior to graduation of students, and made suggestions for improvement. Respondents of the study were 131 graduates from 2014-2017 graduation years, comprising 50% of graduates from each of the Program options in the department. The sampling techniques used were purposive and stratified random sampling techniques. A questionnaire was the research instrument used for data collection and it was administered using e-mails, WhatsApp and phone calls. The results revealed that the employment status of the graduates was about 84% with the duration of unemployment about 29%, 41% and 19% for one, two and three years after their national service respectively. The main factor hindering employability of the graduates was inadequate practical skills since more attention was given to theory at the expense of practical work. The main challenge which requires attention prior to graduation of students was the lack of job-seeking skills. The Department should therefore, focus more on the practical element of the Programs by increasing the practical hours and partner with industry for curriculum development, more internship opportunities and industrial tours, and organise seminars on job acquisition processes prior to graduation of students to enhance employability of the graduates.
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