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British Ambassador Addresses Education for Business at TAGSB

08-Mar-2012 | Source : AG-IP News | Visits : 6496
British Ambassador Addresses Education for Business at TAGSB
Special to ag-IP-news Agency 

AMMAN - “Education is not to reform students or amuse them or to make them expert technicians. It is to unsettle their minds, widen their horizons, inflame their intellects, and teach them to think straight,” with these words the British Ambassador to Jordan Mr. Peter Millett tackled "Education for Business" in the lecture organized upon an invitation by HE Dr. Talal Abu-Ghazaleh.

Prominent Jordanian figures, diplomats, media representatives, scholars and many interested people attended the lecture held at Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Business Forum/Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Graduate School of Business (TAGSB).

HE Dr. Abu-Ghazaleh welcomed Ambassador Mr. Millett and thanked him for accepting the invitation to tackle one of the most important subjects in our time saying:"The fact that we have a full house shows that there are many people who are interested in listening to facts and we are proud to have Mr. Millet here with a lot of information about the role of education."

He added:"We are happy to have special relations with Ambassador Mr. Millett and the British Embassy in many ventures and partnerships that cover various fields especially in the new British program entitled Arab Development Partnership."

Millett’s lecture focused on employment for business and how governments and the private sector need to work together to ensure that schools and universities are producing the people that business needs.

“Education has always been a strength. But the jobs challenge is getting bigger. Jordan’s working age population will grow from 3.4 million in 2009 to 6 million in 2030. And remember that the figure of 12 - 14% unemployment hides the fact that only 35% of the working age population is economically active,” Mr. Millett addressed the attendees.

He stressed that the fundamental point is the need for young people to decide for themselves how to prepare for employment. Mr Millett set out a range of policy approaches in the United Kingdom and emphasized that this model did not necessarily apply in other countries.

“This might mean going for a course that is less prestigious. It might mean doing a science course rather than humanities. And it might mean doing a vocational qualification rather than a degree. But surely getting a job is better than unemployment? And therefore tailoring your skills to meet the demands of the jobs market is the best way to get ahead.”

The essential policy issues are that each country has to make itself competitive and play to its strengths. One of Jordan’s strengths is its people and the high level of education that Jordanians have enjoyed.

The Ambassador added: “It seems to me that a policy shift from the public sector to the private sector is both inevitable and essential. The concentration on public sector jobs stifles creativity and entrepreneurship. But the private sector jobs that need to be developed have to be those that Jordanians are qualified to do. Many private sector investments have generated jobs for the foreigners rather than Jordanians.”

He concluded:"An education system isn’t worth a great deal if it teaches young people how to make a living but doesn’t teach them how to make a life. It should also create active, committed citizens with values and attitudes that contribute to their society. That too is crucial."

At the end of the lecture, Mr. Millett answered a host of questions from attendees which tackled education in Jordan and the UK, world business in addition to others.
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