6 ideas to re-connect a generation

June 30, 2013

Being unemployed at any age is undesirable but youth unemployment is even more of a problem.

Having a job and learning the generic skills that come with doing it properly even with an unskilled job help make young people more employable.

Going from school on to a benefit rather than into further education, training or a job, make young people less employable and the longer they’re not working the more difficult it is for them to get,a nd keep, a job.

Kevin Roberts observes that young people without jobs are at risk of becoming disconnected from society and he offers six ideas to help re-connect them:

  • Partner more schools with local businesses, trade academies, and universities
  • Run career days for every age from 11 up
  • Introduce entrepreneurial skills as a subject in primary schools
  • Create start-up hubs that provide free internet access and basic business amenities for young graduates starting out
  • Cities should run competitions that challenge youth to find solutions to civic problems
  • Sing together. Singing keeps your spirits up, elevates parts of you that don’t often get to rise up. And you could be a YouTube phenomenon.

Having a job doesn’t necessarily mean working for someone else.

The Fieldays provided an opportunity for a young entrepreneur to show age isn’t a barrier to innovation:

. . . 12-year-old Patrick Roskram of Matamata, made an enthusiastic pitch to the Innovation Den panel about his invention; the fencing tool Gudgeon Pro 4in1. Patrick’s passionate speech was recognised by Dr Ray Thompson, Chair of the Angel’s Association NZ, who awarded the $1000 Best Pitch Award to the young finalist saying it was a stand-out presentation. Patrick also won a marketing pack from Vodafone’s Darren Hopper who offered time with their creative agency in Auckland. However, the icing on the cake for the young inventor was a personal invitation from Sir William Gallagher for the 12-year-old to have an internship at Gallagher’s Research and Development department during his school holidays.

Sir William Gallagher joined a surprised Patrick on stage as he finished his presentation. Sir William congratulated Patrick on his pitch, giving him a triple A for enthusiasm.

“You’ve certainly got a solution for the New Zealand market and I can see an opportunity for it. There’s some homework to do but I’m certain you can come up with a product that can go into shops.”

Patrick later said it was all “pretty awesome” and it had always been a dream of his to speak to Sir William and that he had lots of other ideas up his sleeve. . . .

It would be a safe bet that someone with this sort of initiative and ability at that age won’t be troubled by unemployment.


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