There are  71 million unemployed young people all around the world. One reason behind this can be the lack of critical skills needed for a job.

Everyone already knows that having a degree is not enough, not even a master – sometimes what can increase between the two is the amount of frustration one feels when despite having studied more than 5 years you can’t get a job, or at least not the job that explodes one’s abilities  and qualifications. The education system is outdated and incomplete as well as the skills that are developing in students, as these skills are not what the labor market needs. The result is unprepared and unexperienced young people with skills that they can not apply.  One of   the solution for this issue would be to change the education model and invest on the skills that the market is looking for, but that won’t happen tomorrow or in the next 6 months.

Other short-term solutions can include young people actually taking the initiative and acquiring skills proved to be needed as Cognitive Skills (sustained attention, information processing and  multiple simultaneous attention), Soft or applied Skills (Teamwork, Decision Making, Networking, and Critical Thinking)  Foreign Languages and above all the willingness to move across different occupations and also across  the world during a  work life.   As Marieke Vandeweyer stated once we need to keep in mind  that thanks to the globalized world we live in “some jobs are disappearing, new jobs are emerging, and the content of remaining jobs is changing”  That is why youth today needs to be more adaptable than ever and invest continuously in their skills development.

But how can we  develop some of these skills?  Here is an example, Sustained Attention is one skill we are losing because of the continuous use of Social Media and should be taken care of because it is a rare ability nowadays and highly valued by the market.  Scientists have found that  students who engaged in physical activity in an attention test performed better than those who didn’t. , memorize things, read long content slowly and practice attentive listening, all those things will help your brain to focus longer and be more productive.

Going back to our situation, it’s not the time to settle with only formal education, it will not work. Youth needs to find its own potential and discover the tools to exploit it, if not we will find young unhappy people just working because they need to sustain themselves but no because they enjoy doing their work, but as we have heard changing our reality  is in our hands and no one will do it for us.

One way of acquiring those skills can be by doing internships abroad, and AIESEC offers exactly this. You can find more info about it under www.aiesec.org and you can enhance your employability by applying to one of our professional internships!