It is important for apprentices to be given exposure to real-life work pressures, as this further enhances employability, Malta Maritime Forum (MMF) CEO and Malta Employers Association (MEA) Consultant Kevin J Borg remarked.
His message was conveyed at a recent national conference, supported by MCAST and the MEA, entitled: Perceptions or reality: Which skills are employers missing? The MEA participated in the conference through the intervention of Mr Borg, who chaired two workshops. The first was a discussion themed: VET and WBL: Meeting employers’ expectations, while the second took shape in the form of an open discussion with other employer bodies’ representatives.
Describing his intervention, Mr Borg shared that he took the opportunity to emphasise “the importance of employer organisations working closely with MCAST in order to promote Work Based Learning for the mutual benefit of the student and the employer.”
Within a context of tight labour market conditions, with worker shortages pushing up employer wage bills and overstretching existing teams, Mr Borg said “it is obvious that apprenticeships must serve as one of the key solutions to increase the supply of skills whilst building strong employee value propositions for our companies.”
“It is important that apprentices are given the exposure to real-life work pressures as this further enhances their employability,” he added
Zooming into worker shortages within the context of lower technical grades, Mr Borg argued that “Malta cannot afford to lose people along the educational path because they are less academically inclined”.
He emphasised the that the country “needs electricians and welders as much as it needs engineers so whilst it is commendable that the educational system automatically encourages students to attain higher levels, it is ever so important to ensure that those with informal or lower academic qualifications are given their due importance to succeed in accordance with their aptitudes.”
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