Friday, July 29, 2016

Free Education @ Tertiary level is only for 5% of eligible in Sri Lanka

Following on from earlier blog a few days ago, which was galvanized due to an article I read, by a PhD student from Sri Lanka that implied, Sri Lanka has free education and it was immensely superior to the US model where they have to pay for education at the Tertiary level, I am writing a follow to completely debunk her theory of SL. I am not going into the US model here, as that requires an entry all of its own.

In conversation with heads of Companies, employers are increasingly worried, that though HR is their main asset, at all levels, that determine how they succeed, they have NO FAITH in the State’s ability to educate people to take any of the vacancies they have in their companies. This is across the board in ALL industries, and I am flummoxed, why the politicians are NOT addressing this need. Isn’t it good to have a skill shortage, rather than TOO MANY people applying for the job. I was indeed shocked when I was talking to a senior banker who said what a problem he had not having quality staff to recruit, and once they train a good, one they are MORE than likely to have left them for better prospects, either here or overseas, completely debunking the skilled unemployment issue!

Firstly let me tackle the issue of 5% of the 18 year olds who enter University. I sincerely believe that the entrants who both believe it is a right they have earned for being the best in society, go into a course of study they know nothing about, do not have an aptitude for, and so are qualified, but when it comes to employment interview clearly display this ignorance, as it is NOT the course of study they should have followed. The double whammy here is that those who had an aptitude for that field of study were NOT chosen to that faculty, and so the STATE has wasted a fortune educating someone for NO REASON but a Z score mark.

To illustrate this point even further, 70% of the Agriculture Graduates are Female. Less than 1% of these graduates go into a field that bears even a remote fascination to agriculture, an area where we have a huge skill shortage, as we have to use new techniques to be productive, and lower the cost of farm-gate produce for agriculture to be viable in Sri Lanka.

In conclusion, not only is the WRONG 5% receiving free of fee education, which is often  paid for by people who have not even received that level of education, we are NOT educating those who should be educated and able to contribute to society, as we have a convoluted system of choosing the wrong population to receive free tuition. 

I am afraid, I will go so far as to say the PhD student also falls into that! I do not believe, though she extols the virtues of having an education free in Sri Lanka, and was able to get a Fulbright to the US, and who is now pursuing a PhD at Cornell, is somehow going to give the State a return on the state's investment in her! I would not say this if she actually had to pay for her education, then what she does is her choice. We must be always, cognizant of what the STATE PAYMENT MEANS. It is public investment for public benefit or return. If that transaction or contract is not kept, then the state has wasted money, much like paying a bribe from state funds as a commission to a politician to get a contract which the tax payer pays for.  

In short she has fleeced this Country, and has NO rights to extol the virtue of the freebie she received. She has broken the social contract and must be punished, if corrupt officials are in keeping with the spirit of the law.

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