The Indisputable Value of Tertiary Education

We are at the beginning of the year and new students are enrolling for different courses at tertiary institutions, but the public has mixed feelings about pursuing tertiary education.

In recent times, skepticism has arisen regarding the necessity of tertiary education, fuelled by concerns over employment opportunities after graduation.

Critics argue that the job market’s evolving landscape renders higher education obsolete, claiming it fails to guarantee employment.
However, the importance of tertiary education extends far beyond immediate job prospects and economic gains, encompassing invaluable personal, societal and intellectual benefits.

While it’s true that employment rates may fluctuate, the role of higher education transcends mere vocational training.

Tertiary education serves as a catalyst for holistic personal development, nurturing critical thinking, problem-solving, and analytical skills.
These competencies are not confined to specific professions, but form the bedrock of adaptable and versatile individuals capable of navigating the complexities of an ever-changing world.

Moreover, tertiary education fosters an environment for intellectual exploration and the pursuit of knowledge. It equips individuals with the tools to comprehend societal challenges, engage in meaningful discourse, and contribute constructively to the global community.

The ability to think critically, communicate effectively, and adapt to new circumstances are assets that extend beyond the realm of employment, enriching one’s life in multifaceted ways.

Furthermore, the societal impact of tertiary education cannot be overlooked. It serves as a cornerstone for the advancement of civilization by cultivating a knowledgeable and informed citizenry.

An educated populace is better equipped to tackle societal issues, drive innovation, and foster a culture of inclusivity and diversity.

Through research, collaboration, and academic inquiry, higher education institutions become hubs for generating ideas and solutions that transcend immediate job markets.

Additionally, the argument against tertiary education solely based on employment statistics overlooks the varied career trajectories individuals pursue.

Many successful entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders attribute their success not just to their vocational skills, but also to the broader education they have received.

Creativity, adaptability, and resilience qualities nurtured through higher education are instrumental in forging new pathways and seizing opportunities beyond traditional job roles.

Critics often fail to acknowledge the intrinsic value of learning for its own sake.

Tertiary education encourages a lifelong pursuit of knowledge, instilling a passion for continuous learning that extends far beyond the confines of formal education.

The skills and experiences gained during this journey contribute immeasurably to personal growth, fulfilment and the ability to contribute meaningfully to society.

In conclusion, while concerns about job opportunities after graduation are valid, they must not overshadow the profound and far-reaching benefits of tertiary education.

Its significance goes beyond immediate employment, shaping individuals into well-rounded, adaptable and knowledgeable contributors to society.

Instead of questioning its relevance, we should celebrate and enhance the transformative power of higher education in shaping brighter, more informed, and innovative futures for individuals and society as a whole.

Paulus Nghuushi

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