Malawi government on Friday asked graduating students from the Malawi Institute of Journalism (MIJ) to be innovative and to try self-employment instead of waiting on Malawi's small media industry to take them on board.
"I advise you to devise ways of employing yourselves rather than waiting for recruitment," advised principal secretary in the Ministry of Information, Anthony Livuza.
"I know that you have been fully equipped with journalistic skills and you are ready to work, but all the same self-employment can also work out for you," he added. He said while government is committed to addressing challenges institutions offering journalism studies were facing, the journalists themselves are also supposed to be doing something on their own.
Livuza added that his ministry would ensure that graduation journalism students got employed to explore the skills they had acquired from the institution.
"With the digital migration the country is going through, know that my ministry cannot afford to see you idle," he said.
But after considering large numbers of graduating students yearly, Livuza said government will also talk to private partners to offer employment to graduating students.
Proprietor for Capital Radio, Aladin Osman, who gave a keynote address during the graduation, offered internship opportunities for six months to six students selected at random in the assembly hall.
"You are supposed to be self starters to avoid frustration in the profession," advised Osaman. "When you are let down in the process of doing your professional duties, don't give up. Take that as a milestone to prepare for your success." Out of the 205 students, 71 students were awarded diplomas while the rest received certificates.
Executive director at MIJ, Dalitso Nkunika said she is satisfied with the skills imparted to the students.
"I am optimistic that the graduating students would bring new things to the industry," she said. "We have equipped these students with synonymous skills in the two and half years we have been with them."
Gregory Gondwe is a Malawian journalist who started writing in 1993. He is also a media consultant assisting several international journalists pursuing assignments in Malawi. He holds a Diploma and an Intermediate Certificate in Journalism among other media-related certificates. He can be contacted on . Follow him on Twitter at @Kalipochi.
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