However, once one graduates the clock starts ticking to acquire experience in the field that one has graduated in. What is often an overlooked challenge is that many opportunities for graduates have an age limit.
In South Africa, in many cases you need to have significant experience by the time you reach 35 as opportunies that are reserved for the youth end at 35.
However it takes many graduates atleast five years to get an internship which is often just one year and once you complete one internship, you are unlikely to get another as companies specify they want unexperienced graduates.
Yet jobs want anywhere between 2 to 5 years of experience which can take over a decade to accumulate. Which means many graduates reach 35 without these 2 to 5 years of experience making it unlikely they ever get hired.
According to Statistics SA the results of the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) for the first quarter of 2020 indicate that employment decreased by 38 000 to 16,4 million and the number of unemployed persons increased by 344 000 to 7,1 million.
With some 7.1 million unemployed and unemployment sitting at 30.1% nevermind the extra thousands of graduates set to graduate this year adding to the dire situation.
Why is age used to limit opportunities for graduates, employers and government should be considering the current South African unemployment situation and be more flexible with opportunities.
An age limit simply puts pressure on graduates and for thousands that reach 35 without the required 2 to 5 years experience means they can no longer follow thier dreams through internships, learnerships or apprenticeships making for an uncertain future.
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