Dr Sunil Nawaratne,
Secretary, Ministry of Higher Education, Government of Sri Lanka
Young population needs to be endowed with knowledge of Modern Science
We have the vision to turn Sri Lanka into Asia’s hub of cost effective and quality education. The people of the country, and its leaders understand very well, that without comprehensive knowledge in every vertical, the country will be unable to achieve its long term development goals. The key to prosperity lies in human capital development, and higher education plays a bigger role.
Improving the quality of graduates
Sri Lanka intends to have top-class higher education institutes, which are devoted to enriching society by producing a long line of highly educated graduates. The universities must have understanding of the needs of the global industry to inculcate the job winning skills in their graduates. Currently, the country is working on a mission of upgrading 7 out of its 15 universities into world class universities. We also aim to come up with educational policies to ensure that 100 percent of the graduates are employable.
Most important skills
The most important skills and capabilities required while recruiting new graduates are communication skills, team work, integrity, intellectual ability and confidence. While the students are being taught in the college, it is also important to incorporate these skills in them. A programme of leadership skill development has been introduced at certain universities, under which the students are given three weeks of training to mould their mindsets and inculcate in them leadership skills and other skills.
To improve IT and communication skills, English and IT training is given to all students before they enter the university. A professional graduate programme has been introduced wherein students doing their graduation can obtain professional qualifications like accounting, smart chartered, marketing or human resource management, etc. while they are completing their graduation in the university itself. To develop globally accepted graduates, we have introduced a KSAM model. KSAM stands for Knowledge, Skills, Attitude and Mindset.