Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Misplaced Purpose

Every year state-owned enterprises are forced to take in a certain number of university students for the summer.

And for many of these companies, it's a chance to exploit free labour, as they don't have to pay them anything, not even transportation or meals. It's just a way for the government to fudge its employment figures for a few months.

However, for those of us who are stuck having to practically entertain these students for the summer, it's a trying experience.

Part of the problem is that company management give little thought to having these interns, thinking it's a great way for the different departments to have free grunt work.

However, some of these departments are at a loss of what to give these kids to do, as they are only around for two months but yet they need to be trained somewhat to be able to perform some tasks at a decent standard.

Some of these students aren't even studying in the field that the companies specialize in, making the situation more difficult if they don't even have an interest in what the enterprise does.

You'd hope some of these kids would be pro-active as well, but many chat online with their friends most of the time, or think they are being enthusiastic, but don't have the proper skills to match.

The most unfortunate thing of all is that because these companies don't give much thought to these students, they are missing an ideal opportunity to market the enterprise to the future generation as a possible potential employer or as a place that offers a service or product to be proud of or strive for.

Instead the students just slog through whatever tasks are given to them, and these assignments are haphazardly done because they haven't had much or any training.

Meanwhile the rest of us have to pick up the slack creating heavier workloads and dubious quality control.

While giving these students an internship is a good way for them to have a taste of the "real world", it would be better if the "real world" was more organized and gave them the tools and training to do a decent job.

But why worry about the next generation when we have things to deal with now?

Besides, we're all cogs in the state's machinery -- why not let them get a taste of what's to come...


Anonymous said...

Why doesn't somebody write up a protocol for these students that can be used each summer to make it efficient for the enterprise and interesting and stimulating for the students? Treat it as a way to recruit young blood into the profession.

ks said...

agree. they should be given some sort of a syllabus to follow so as not to waste their time learning a living skill.