Embracing Higher Education: Encouraging Malaysian Youth to Further Studies

Embracing Higher Education: Encouraging Malaysian Youth to Further Studies

By : Hazelena Dewi Fahatul Ariffin, Dr Normazaini Saleh

THERE is a worrying trend in Malaysia where many young people are reluctant to pursue higher education. A survey conducted by the Department of Statistics found that approximately 390,000 or 72.1 percent of Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) graduates do not want to further their studies.

Although the data is from 2019, it is believed that this trend continued in 2020 and 2021. Their unwillingness provides serious obstacles to their professional and personal advancement, as well as to the overall advancement of the country.

In order to motivate and encourage these young people to seize the opportunities that higher education offers, there is a need to identify to anticipate, and respond to their viewpoints.

Understanding the root causes

Understanding the fundamental causes of young people’s resistance to further education is essential to properly foresee and handle this resistance. One of the academic scholars pointed out three main reasons caused this issue in which are; more employment opportunities on gig platforms, the influence of social media, and the belief that having good academic results may not necessarily guarantee high-paying jobs.

However, they may be hesitant for a variety of other reasons, including a lack of knowledge about possibilities, unfavorable impressions of higher education, uncertainty about their future careers, or financial limitations.

Highlighting the benefits

Young people’s mindsets can be changed by highlighting towards many advantages of higher education. Showcase the accomplishments of alumni who have gone on to have satisfying employment, stable finances, and personal growth.

Efforts need to be geared to show them how obtaining a higher education gives them the necessary connections, information, and abilities to greatly improve their future possibilities.
Earlier efforts before these young people leave their school, activities that expose them to higher education such as campus visits, career fairs, and interactive sessions with alumni, instructors, and current students to learn more about university life can escalate their interest in further education.

In addition, we need to use the latest media platforms to reach out to them such as tik tok or Instagram to channel this information, rather than expecting them to attend an educational fair to serve this kind of information.

This is because young people who are not interested won’t look for it, therefore to make sure they are exposed to the right information about the advantages of tertiary education, the information must be short and precise coupled with an interesting approach.

Promoting career prospects

To counter the widespread belief that a college degree is not a guarantee of employment, emphasis needs to be given to convince them of the strong correlation between education and career opportunities.

Highlight the market demand for experienced professionals and the advantage graduates have in securing employment, particularly in sectors with intense competition.
At the early stage, collaboration can be initiated by schools with industry partners to provide insight on emerging employment trends and the value of higher education credentials. Thus these young people have the right mindset on the importance of education for their future careers.

Enhancing Career Guidance

By providing thorough career advisory services during school time, it may reduce the ambiguity around career decisions.
Create career counseling sessions, mentoring programs, and workshops to assist young people in discovering their interests, skills, and potential career choices. Schools can work together with industry experts and alumni networks to offer practical advice on a range of career alternatives.

Showcasing Alternative Pathways

Recognize that not everyone is a good fit for a typical university education. Showcase alternate routes like entrepreneurship courses, apprenticeships, or vocational training. Highlight the accomplishments of people who took different roads and succeeded admirably to demonstrate that there are many ways to advance one’s career and one’s personal development.
Enhancing Financial Support

Financial constraints frequently prevent young people from pursuing further education. Advocate for increased accessibility to scholarships, grants, and student loans to ameliorate this concern.

Promote the financial aid programs provided by academic institutions, government agencies, and private organizations. Include budgeting advice and information about part-time employment opportunities in financial management advice.

Narrow down the viewpoint

In conclusion, a thorough and cooperative strategy is needed to address Malaysian youths’ resistance to higher education.
We can anticipate their viewpoints and encourage them to embrace the transformational power of higher education by comprehending their concerns, highlighting the advantages, offering financial support, improving career guidance, and showing alternate courses.

In addition to being advantageous for individuals, investing in the education of our kids is essential for the overall advancement and development of our country.

* Hazelena Dewi Fahatul Ariffin is a Lecturer in the Department of Economy and Muamalah at the Faculty of Management and Muamalah, Universiti Islam Selangor (UIS)
** Dr. Normazaini Saleh is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Economy and Management at Faculty of Management and Muamalah, Islam Selangor (UIS).

*** The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of Astro AWANI.

Share This


Wordpress (0)
Disqus (0 )