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Generation Z Turn to Online Learning to Sharpen Their Skills

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Generation Z

The transition from traditional to virtual and hybrid workplace environments has proven to be irreversible. Reports by Google data on Generation Z behavior indicate that a significant majority of this population has become accustomed to online-based learning through visually rich, technology-based, and socially interactive platforms.

Many Generation Z learners have expressed a high preference for virtual and blended learning over traditional programmes that usually require them to enroll and attend physical classrooms to attain certain qualifications.

Learning is ubiquitous and second nature to Generation Z employees. Markedly, the period spanning the last three years has seen an accelerated rate of employees enrolling for various L&D programs, most notably online courses, which offered the convenience and accessibility needed amidst health safety threats and inconveniences caused by the pandemic.

Anca Gosling, Aeroclass’s Director for Content Development, notes that Generation Z, colloquially known as “Gen Zers” or Zoomers, grow up immersed in technology, hence they value technology solutions, inclusivity, and construct their identities around self-reliant and pragmatic solutions. It is not surprising that Gen Z prefers ‘learning at the point of need’ using modern technologies, smartphones, or personal computers. At Aeroclass we use technology to anticipate and cater to the needs of the next generation to create a unique and personal learning experience.

In 2020, Gen Z learners interacted with digital learning content 50% more than in 2019. Most generation Z learners consider learning indispensable to build a flourishing career. Unlike traditional programs, virtual learning options provide a set of learning and development pros, from increasing internal mobility for individuals pursuing up-skilling and re-skilling courses to providing opportunities for leadership development, management development, and virtual onboarding.

A survey conducted by LinkedIn in 2021 reported that over 86% of Generation Z have enrolled in online courses to build hard and soft skills. Further, the report showed that this population spends 12% more of their private time on online-based learning platforms building skills than the average learner.

The past 2-3 years have offered significant lessons for many organizations – lots of unexpected challenges and considerable opportunities to capitalize on. In fact, the learning and development industry has moved to the forefront. It is now a matter of interest for many individuals, including those in employment and those looking to secure jobs in different sectors, including the aviation industry. Many employees and those seeking employment have recognized that learning is a “must-have” requirement to succeed. Therefore, they are exploring learning options that can provide the opportunity to further develop their careers and access C-suite level. This has led to a tectonic shift toward digital learning options where this generation of learners can access quality content and interact with a wide range of information pertinent to the challenges and complexities that characterize contemporary workplace environments.

Besides offering convenience and access to quality content, online learning increased robustness as a learning solution, providing superior coverage regarding instructional materials and reach. “Compared to classroom training, online learning offers a more inclusive option. Leave no one behind (LNOB) is the transformative promise of the United Nations (UN) 2023 Agenda for Sustainable Development and can be achieved only by empowering people through education. Technology is a powerful tool that allows people to access information that otherwise they would not be able to access.” explained Anca Gosling.

From an economic perspective, virtual training has presented a cost-effective alternative, enabling students to access L&D programmes at a lower budget than they would incur if they were to enroll in classroom-based courses. Two years ago, over 38% of individuals taking learning and development courses projected less spending on classroom-based learning, and 57% anticipated bigger budgets for online learning. In 2022, these figures have changed significantly, with current statistics indicating a high predisposition toward online learning. Today, 73% of learning and development professionals predict less spending on classroom training, while 79% have estimated higher budgets for online learning.

Furthermore, online learning offers a smart and innovative way for learners to evaluate themselves and quantify the learning outcomes from various programmes. Employees can use online-based engagement surveys to measure program effectiveness and assess their value in producing the desired learning outcomes and satisfaction.

Anca Gosling emphasizes that organizations must develop robust L&D programmes and infuse a continuous learning culture to build a future-proof workforce. Considering the complex business environment that we are currently facing, investing in employees will surely pay off. At the same time, organizations should consider aligning their learning strategy with the core business objectives.  This will increase retention, and motivation and ultimately the business will perform better. As Gen Z represents the dominant cohort of employees in the workplace, online-based training comes as a natural choice and a feasible solution for organizations to imbue a strong learning culture.

Research shows that the pandemic had a strong effect on Gen Zers. For those that are looking for a career change, perusing other opportunities or simply learning a new skill, online learning provides an effective way to develop skills that can connect them to their new career paths and offer the desired job. Besides, online training shifts learning from the static, one-off classroom courses to an impactful, flexible, and sustainable environment. Simply put, the sky is the limit!.

 

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Education

2023 UTME, Direct Entry: JAMB Begins Sales of Forms on Saturday, Announces Deadlines

The sale of forms for the 2023 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) and Direct Entry (DE) for prospective applicants today (Saturday).

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Barring any change in plans, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has said it would start the sale of forms for the 2023 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) and Direct Entry (DE) for prospective applicants today (Saturday).

Investors King gathers that the UTME is an assessment examination conducted annually by JAMB for candidates who want to secure admission into tertiary institutions in Nigeria.

Prospective candidates are expected to purchase their forms and commence registration from today, Saturday, January 14, 2023.

JAMB also disclosed that it would close the sale of forms and registration of candidates on Tuesday, February 14.

Also, the board started the sale of Direct Entry (DE) application documents in Nigeria and foreign centres, adding that direct entry applicants from Polytechnics and Colleges of Education can obtain their forms from centres close to them.

It further stated that candidates applying for the entrance examination into the various tertiary institutions in Nigeria are advised to keep in mind that PIN vending for the UTME examination would also end on Tuesday, February 14, while the registration portal will be shut down on Friday, February 17.

This process is also applicable to foreign students at the accredited JAMB registration centre.

Moreover, candidates have been admonished to open a new email or have a valid existing email account before starting the process as part of the requirements to sit for the examination.

For the general entry candidates seeking admission into the Universities, Polytechnics and Colleges of Education, are required to have at least five (5) credit grades in their O’level with English and Mathematics compulsory to qualify them to sit for the examination.

However, the direct entry candidates are to obtain a minimum of five (5) credit grades in their O’level with English and Mathematics compulsory as well as a distinction or upper credit in their polytechnic or college of education.

The general and direct entry candidates are allowed to use not more than two sittings of their Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) certificate to qualify them for the examination ahead of the 2023 academic session across all tertiary institutions in the country.

For admission into first degree, National Diploma (ND), National innovation Diploma (NID) and Nigeria Certificate in Education (NCE) programmes, five (5) O level credit passes including English Language are required while credit in Mathematics is required for law and science-based and social science programmes.

A statement by JAMB had disclosed that the Direct Entry (DE) registration would commence from Monday, 20th February and run till Thursday, 20th April, 2023.

JAMB spokesman, Dr. Fabian Benjamin, in the statement, confirmed that the decision was taken at the end of JAMB’s management meeting.

It further said that Saturday, 29th April, 2023, had been fixed for the conduct of the 2023 UTME, and the examination was expected to run till Monday, 12th May, 2023.

JAMB added that it had also fixed Thursday, 16th March, 2023, for the conduct of its optional mock-UTME.

It noted that interested candidates would be required to pay the sum of N1000 service charge for Computer Based Test (CBT) centres for the conduct of mock examination at the point of registration so as to prevent a situation where candidates would indicate interest to sit for the mock-UTME leading the various centres to commit human and material resources only to stay away on the day of the examination.

 

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JAMB Moves To Block Leakages, Introduces eNaira as Payment Mode for UTME Applicants

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With a view to blocking leakages in its transactions and ensuring elimination of extortion of candidates, the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has made eNaira as mode of payment for those who want to register for Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) in this year.
The board is partnering with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to adopt e-naira as the preferred payment mode chosen for the 2023 UTME registration.
Aside that the new payment pattern would checkmate financial leakages within the JAMB system, the apex bank in Nigeria revealed that eNaira would prevent candidates from being extorted by registration centres.
Disclosing the development during a meeting with JAMB and its financial partners, the Director of Information, Technology, Architecture, and Strategy at CBN, Rakiya Mohammed, said the newly introduced payment mode would also reduce cost of cash transactions.
Mohammed, who was represented by an official of the bank, Abdul Shedrack, while maintaining that the new payment mode would block leakages in JAMB’s transactions, also stated that e-Naira was needed to reduce the overall indirect cost of cash transactions on the broader community.
Aside that the mode would accelerate the digitization of cash and facilitate the development of e-commerce as well as support, the CBN Director added that it would enhance the implementation of government policies.
On the seamless implementation and usage of e-naira seamless, Muhammed explained that the e-naira is the digital version of the naira currency as it has the same value and is backed by law.
Following this revelation, the director said that the mode would function as a safe and efficient alternative means of payment which is seamless and fortified against any form of abuse.
The CBN, therefore, urged JAMB applicants to download and install the eWallet from its website or via Google Play Store or Apple’s IOS Store.
It could be recalled that in 2021, Nigeria became the first African country to introduce a central bank digital currency (CBDC) by launching the eNaira.
However, over a year after, the adoption of digital currency is still very slow, even though the Central Bank of Nigeria believes it has recorded significant success with the currency.
The CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, had disclosed that eNaira has recorded 700,000 transactions valued at N8 billion since its inauguration on October 25, 2021.
Emefiele’s assertion goes to mean that more Nigerians are gradually embracing the digital version of the nation’s currency.
Investors King findings revealed that adopting eNaira as payment mode for UTME will likely be accepted by young Nigerians who are majority of people applying for JAMB forms.
Sampling opinions of admission seekers who are potential applicants of JAMB, they said the development is welcomed, adding that it was expected since the nation is fastly embracing cashless policy.

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Fidelity Bank Aims to Shoot up Quality Education in Kano State

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University - Investors King

Towards supporting the delivery of quality education in the country, leading financial institution, Fidelity Bank Plc, has donated several learning materials to the Asmau Dambatta Foundation.

The Non-Executive Director of Fidelity Bank Plc, Alhaji Isa Inuwa, disclosed this in a statement at a brief event put together to commemorate the donation in Kano State.

The statements read that the donated items include 1,500 pieces of female uniforms, 1,500 pieces of hijabs, 1,000 pieces of male uniforms, 5,000 pieces of 60 leaves notebooks and 100 double seater desks.

“At Fidelity Bank, we believe that our success as an organization is intimately tied to the fortunes of our host communities. This informs our numerous Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) interventions across the country where we work to ensure the standard of living of the communities are improved.

“For us, CSR goes beyond philanthropy to also include sustainability as we aim to empower the next generation to take on the challenges and opportunities that may come their way. What better way to do this than to help them study in a conducive environment? That is why we are donating learning materials ranging from school uniforms to classroom desks to the Asmau Dambatta Foundation today.”

“That is why we are donating learning materials ranging from school uniforms to classroom desks to the Asmau Dambatta Foundation today,” he concluded.

Receiving the educational materials, a trustee of the foundation, Alhaji Balarabe Bala,  expressed his gratitude to the bank’s management and assured the guests that the materials would be used judiciously, especially by the indigent students and community schools who were in dire need of such items.

Despite the fall in stocks of banks in 2022, Fidelity Bank have joined other top banks in ensuring that CSR is still a top priority for them to give back to the society.

The bank was recently recognized as the Best SME Bank Nigeria 2022 by the Global Banking & Finance Awards.

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