Journal of Career and Technical Education
A Survey of Vocational Training Needs of 15 – 25 Years Old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis
M. I. BELLO
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University
I. M. DANJUMA
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University
A. Y. ADAMU
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University
The main purpose of the study was to explore and describe the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis of Bauchi State, Nigeria. Specifically, the researchers sought to; describe their demographic characteristics, examine their vocational training needs, the influence of gender on the vocational needs, and also identify problems associated in their vocational training needs. The design for the study was survey that involved 128, 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths. Since the study population frame did not exist, a cluster sampling technique was employed in the study. The cluster sample was drawn from eight wards that constitute Bauchi Metropolis. Each ward taken as a cluster. The instrument used for the study was a 16-item questionnaire, which was constructed by the researchers and validated by experts from Vocational and Technology Education Programme of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University. Data collected were analyzed using frequency and percentage statistical tools. Finally conclusions were reached and recommendations made.
Background of the Study
Youths represent the future and hope of every country. The high returns on resources invested in youths today have both immediate and long term benefits. Where they existed and are functioning well, youth programmes play an important role in building life skills of individual young people, strengthening families and communities, and working towards sustainable development as a major contributor to the overall progress of a country (Seiders, 1985). Many countries have realized that the development and harnessing the potential of the youths can best be achieved through a sound educational system. In Nigeria for instance, the training given to youths at the secondary school level is both pre-vocational and academic. According to the National Policy on Education (NPE, 2004), the aim of secondary school is to make a person to be productive to himself and the society. Academic and vocational courses are offered at the Junior Secondary School (JSS) level. These courses are suppose to provide definite purpose and meaning to education by relating to occupational goals, provides technical knowledge and work skills necessary for employment, and develop abilities, attitudes, work habits and appreciation which contributes to a satisfying and productive life. Abdullahi (1993) states that vocational education is expected among other things to assist students to acquire relevant occupational and technical skills, prepare for future occupations, and make successful transition from school to world of work.
However, it is very disturbing to observe that most of our graduates at both the JSS and SSS levels that have not further their studies stay without job and further education. Despite the fact that the training at JSS level was target at preparing this group of youths with both academic and vocational skills that would make them become self- reliant and also, prepare them for further studies. What then was the problem? Was it that these youths have not been given the adequate training that would enable them identifying their needs, so that they can initiate and pursue available vocation? What are the problems that are militating against the efforts being made to help the youths became self-reliant and useful to the society? This study attempts to find out answers to some of these questions.
United Nations (1985) described youth as those persons falling between the ages of 15 - 24 years. By this definition, therefore children are those persons under the age of 14. According to World Bank (2006), the term "youth" in general refers to those who are between the ages of 15 - 25. However, it is worth noting that Article 1 of the United Nations defines children as persons up to the age of 18. Though by that explanation many countries also draw a line on youth at the age at which a person is given equal treatment under the law - often referred to as the "age of maturity". This age is often 18 in many countries, and once a person passes this age, he is considered to be an adult. As enshrined in Nigeria, it is expected that when a child attained the ages of 18, he/she must have acquired a skill that will make a person to be productive to himself and the society (NPE, 2004), which by implication can fend for himself with minimum supervision from elders. However, the operational definition and nuances of the term 'youth' often vary from country to country, depending on the specific socio-cultural, institutional, economic and political factors. For example, in Botswana, the national youth policy adopted in 1996, defined youth as a proportion of the population falling within the age range of 12 to 29 years (Squire, 2000).
Education the common property of everyone, the prime creator and conveyor of knowledge in any facet, is the most complex human endeavor (Galadima, 2003). In other words, it is the only means by which a society can become for better or for worse. That is to say strengthening general education at the primary and secondary school levels are the first priority for public policies to improve productivity and flexibility of the work force. In addition to generating broad benefits to society, general education directly increases worker mobility and productivity and increases the access (chance) of the poor and socially disadvantaged groups to training and wage employment (World Bank, 1991). For example, in Peru, workers with complete secondary school education have a 50% greater chance of receiving training. That is to say, training in specific skills is more effective when trainees have strong literacy, numeracy and problem solving skills, which by implication, it is expected that lower secondary education can provide this foundation.
General education provides the society with values, communicative and manipulative skills on which effective vocational education is based. Without knowledge of reading, writing and arithmetic, good vocational education cannot be imparted. Vocational education builds on a foundation of good general education (Okoro, 1993). World Bank (1991) reports that, 70% of the proprietors in Ibadan, Nigeria who engaged in radio and television repairs have secondary education. That is to say general education teaches those values, skills and knowledge which each citizen should have in order to understand the society in which he lives and play an intelligent part in its affairs. For example electricity can be taught as general education and as vocational education. As general education, the emphasis is on helping students understand the principles of electricity and to become intelligent users of electrical appliances.
Okoro (1993) defines vocational education as "any form of education whose primary purpose is to prepare persons for employment in recognized occupations". That is to say vocational education provides skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary for effective employment in specific occupations. To further buttress the definition given above, vocational education can be conceived as a comprehensive term referring to those aspects of educational process involving, in addition to general, the acquisition of practical skills, attitudes, understanding and knowledge relating to occupations in various sectors of economic and social life. The Nigerian National Policy on Education (NPE, 2004) highlighted aspects of vocational education as:
(a)an integral part of general education
(b)a means of preparing for occupational fields and effective participation in the world of work.
(c)an aspect of lifelong learning and a preparation for responsible citizenship
(d)an instrument for promoting environmentally sound sustainable development
(e)a method of facilitating poverty alleviation.
These are consistent with those found in UNESCO and ILO (2002) reports. The provision of vocational education starts at the Junior Secondary level in Nigeria, where students/youths are exposed to vocational aspects such as Business Studies and Introductory Technology. Introductory Technology comprises of some theoretical knowledge and practical skills in electricity and electronic, woodwork, metal work, and building trades. It is expected that at the end of the three-year Junior Secondary School the youths must have been equipped to either pursue higher education or opt out into the world of work.
Abdullahi (1993) states that, vocational education is expected among other things to assist students to acquire relevant occupational and technical skills, prepare for future occupations, and make successful transition from school to world of work.
However, it has been observed that the present practice in vocational education curriculum development in Nigeria encourages lack of harmony between the educational practice and the world of work (Oranu, 1990). To buttress the above point UNESCO (1979) had earlier reported that the institutions responsible for manpower training are rarely in close contact with industries
Okoro (2003) categorizes into three the vocational needs that Nigeria in particular may dwelt into so as to reduce the rate of unemployment taking into cognizance the cost implication as follows:
(1)Production of Artisans - This includes vocations like mechanics, furniture making and electricians.
(2)Production of Agriculturalist - This includes vocations like poultry farming, horticulture, animal husbandry.
(3)Production of Fashion Designers - This includes vocations like tailoring, dyers, barbers.
He also interviewed teachers, young school leavers and students of pre-vocational subjects in Nigeria on the problems militating against proper imparting of vocational skills in schools and revealed that lack of funds, lack of facilities, mismanagement of resources, lack of qualified personnel, and lack of cooperation from principals, among others.
Akubudike (2003) also reports other problems such as; Inadequate Staffing, Poor Attitude of Students, Lack of Proper Guidance and Counseling, Un-coordination of Career-Oriented School Clubs or Association, Lack of Exposure to Public Lectures.
Suffice it to say that these problems might have contributed to the increasing high rates of school drop-outs in most cities and villages in Nigeria, which became the problem for their immediate society and the government. Even though, successive governments in Nigeria have brought in youth empowerment programmes. Of recent the National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS), which was aimed at creating a new Nigeria citizen who values hard work and who realizes that one cannot have something for nothing (NEEDS, 2005). Obiefuna (2003) reports that most of the Nigerian youths want to have good things in life but are not ready to be subjected to the world of work.
As the world of work is further changing, most of the employers require certain skills from school leavers before being employed. This change in employers' expectation has resulted from the changing nature of workers roles in the work place. Although employers are still interested in hiring individuals who have received occupationally specific training, they also want individuals with a solid grounding in basic academic skills. The types of basic skills employers expect their employees to possess have been listed in a number of publications (e.g. College Entrance Examination, 1984; Carnevale, Gainer and Meltzer, 1988). For example, Hollenbeck (1987) in South Dakota and What Employers Say about Vocational Education in South Carolina (1986) in their researches highlighted some gray areas which need to be mended in order to achieve a purposeful objective in order to deliver the expectations of employers. The areas highlighted includes; Basic Skills, Communication, Image, and Employability Skills. They also made a number of suggestions, which if looked at seriously can really contribute to vocational education programmes in Nigeria. The suggestions include:
(1)More communication and closer collaboration between business/industry and vocational education institutions should be enhanced.
(2)In order to improve its image, more and better publicity concerning vocational education should be put in place.
(3)The teaching of basic academic skills such as reading, mathematics, and writing should be integrated into vocational instructions.
(4)Identification of and instruction in a common core of employability skills that are transferable across occupations including problem-solving and decision making skills and skills necessary for getting and keeping a job should be introduced.
(5)In order to develop work maturity skills, more opportunities for supervised work experience that provide close articulation between in-school educational experience and on-the-job experience.
(6)Emphasis on applied basic skills and employability skills in secondary programs and technical skills in post secondary programmes should be inculcated.
Stanwick (2005, 2006) and Sherman (2006) investigated outcomes from various levels of vocational education and training and found out that the employment outcomes six months after training depend on the level of vocational education and training undertaken.
They also considered initial outcomes by gender of vocational education and training (VET) students. They found that males had a smoother transition to employment, obtaining better employment outcomes six months after training when compared with females.
Smith and Green (2005) conducted a follow-up survey of school students one to three years after they had left school. They found that participating in a school-based apprenticeship provides a clear pathway into apprenticeship or traineeships in a similar industry area.
Using the Longitudinal Survey of Australian Youth Data, Anlezark, Karmel and Ong (2006) found that school VET programs provide a clear pathway for some students, particularly for boys studying in the areas of building and engineering. However, few girls appear to keep on with the VET subjects taken at school. They also noted a mismatch between the VET courses and programs which students undertook at school, and those which they studied after school. This leads to the question of whether school VET programs need to be better linked with the world of work and post-school study or, alternatively, should concentrate on providing a broad pre-vocational skills.
Lamb and Vickers (2006) further examined the issue of whether VET programs within schools need to be aligned with those outside schools, and found that linked programs typically result in smoother transitions to work, particularly for students who do not further their education.
By tracking young people, researchers are now able to conclude that vocational education and training assists the transition to work. However, the smoothness of this transition does vary depending on student demographics and the nature of the VET program undertaken. Students undertaking JSS 1 and II may not, in the short term, attain the jobs they hoped for without further training. This is in agreement with Harris, Rainey and Sumner (2006) who stated that students who experience multiple pathways are generally not aware of the career development services (which are usually carried out at senior level of secondary school) available or do not think they need them.
Statement of the Problem
The total youth population in the world today is estimated to be about 1,500 million and is projected to grow to 2 billion by the year 2050 (Seiders, 1985). He also states that the total number of youths will remain greater in rural areas over the next ten to fifteen years; all future growth in number of youth will be in the cities. Going by what is happening and considering the rate at which the youths in Nigeria are graduating at both JSS and SSS levels and a high percentage of them are doing nothing in terms of being engaged in vocations or trades that could earn them a living and preventing them from becoming a menace in the society, one will start to wonder what is going to happen in the future. Experience has shown that some of the graduates of both the JSS and SSS are jobless. Therefore, they become liability to both their parents and the society. Some engage in vices that are detrimental to themselves and the society. However, efforts have been made by the government and some NGOs to address some of these problems through setting up training centers and programmes which some youths undergo in order to become self-reliant. Despite these efforts the problem is becoming very persistent among our youths as their population is increasing. Probably most of these programmes that were targeted at our youths of the secondary school level age group have not been based on sufficient data from empirical studies on their specific needs and aspirations. As such there is the tendency that such laudable programmes may not be able to adequately address the problems of this group of youths in the society. It is against this background that this study examines the vocational training needs of out-of-school youths in Bauchi metropolis.
Objectives of the Study
The study sought to achieve the following objectives:
(1)Describe the demographic characteristics of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi metropolis.
(2)Examine the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi metropolis.
(3)Examine the influence of gender on the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi metropolis.
(4)Identify the problems associated in their vocational training needs.
The following research questions were investigated:
(1)What are the demographic characteristics of the 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
(2)What are the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
(3)How does gender influences the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
(4)What are the problems associated with the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
The study is a survey research. A survey research is a research that employs the study of large and small population by selecting and studying sample chosen from the population to discover the relative incidence, which by impact can easily serve as a forecaster and predictor (Olaitan, Ali, Eyoh and Sowande, 2000). In this study, the vocational training needs of 15-25 years old out-of-school youths were examined and described.
Area of the Study
The area of the study was Bauchi Metropolis in Bauchi State of Nigeria. Bauchi Metropolis been the capital of Bauchi State Nigeria is located at 10o19’N, 9o50’E with a population of 316,173 (2004). The city lies on the Port Harcourt – Maiduguri railway line. Bauchi metropolis consists of eight administrative wards (units). These are: Hardo Ward, Dan'iya Ward, Makama Sarkin Baki 1 Ward, Makama Sarkin Baki 2 Ward, Majidadi A Ward, Majidadi B Ward, Dawaki Ward, and Dankade Ward respectively.
The population of the study comprises of all 15-25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis of Bauchi State.
Sample and Sampling Technique
A total of 128, 15-25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis participated in the study. The study was aimed at describing the vocational training needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis. Hence the need to employ a sampling method that would ensure a proper representation of the larger population of the out-of-school youths was necessary. In addition the study population frame did not exist; therefore, a cluster sampling method was employed. Cluster sampling involves first selecting large grouping (e.g. wards or units) and then selecting the sample of the study (i.e. elements) from each grouping (Olaitan et.al., 2000). The eight administrative wards of the metropolis constitute the clusters. The parameters that were considered for the selection of the study sample were a youth must be within the age range of 15 - 25 years old and out-of-school. He or she must have possessed at least a minimum qualification of Junior Secondary School or Senior Secondary School Certificate. Using simple random sampling technique, a total of one hundred and twenty eight (128) 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths were sampled from the eight clusters (wards).
For the purpose of this research, one instrument was developed and used by the researchers. That is a 16-item Vocational Training Needs Questionnaire (VNTQ). The VNTQ sought demographic information on the participants such as sex, age, address, marital status, educational status, employment status and agency where training was acquired, which describes the characteristics of the out-of-school youths. It also sought other information such as preferred vocational training needs and the problems usually faced when receiving training. The VNTQ was validated by experts from Vocational and Technology Education Programme at Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi, Nigeria.
Method of Data Analysis
The data collected was analyzed using frequency and simple percentage to answer the research questions raised.
RESULTS AND INTERPRETATION
Research Question One
What are the Demographic Characteristics of the Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
Table 1: Frequencies and Percentages of Demographic Characteristics of 15 - 25 Years Old Out of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis (n = 128) DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS FREQUENCY PERCENTAGE A.Gender (i)Male 79 61.79 (ii)Female 49 38.21 B.Age Range (i)15 – 20 Years 80 62.5 (ii)20 – 25 Years 48 37.5 C.Marital Status (i)Single 97 75.78 (ii)Married 22 17.19 (iii)Divorced 6 4.69 (iv)Widowed 3 2.34 D.Educational Status (i)Attended JSS 41 32.03 (ii)Attended SSS 87 67.97 E.Employment Status (i)Trained and Employed 20 15.63 (ii)Trained and Unemployed 27 21.09 (iii)Untrained and Unemployed 81 63.28
Table 1 shows that 61.79% and 38.21 % of the respondents were male and female respectively, 62.5% and 37.5% of the respondents were in the age group of 15 - 20 and 20 - 25 years old. The percentages of single, married, divorced and widowed respondents were 75.78%, 17.19%, 4.69% and 2.34% respectively. 32.03% of the respondents attended Junior Secondary School, while 67.97% of the respondents attended Senior Secondary School. 15.63% of the respondents were trained and employed, 21.09% were trained and unemployed and 63.28% were untrained and unemployed.
Research Question Two
What are the Preferred Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 Years old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
Table 2: Frequencies, Percentages and Ranking of Preferred Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 Years old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis (n = 128) S/NO. VOCATIONAL TRAINING AREA FREQUENCY PERCENTAGE RANK 1. Computer Maintenance and Operation Work 24 18.75 1st 2. Tailoring 12 9.38 2nd 3. Electrical Installation and Maintenance work 11 8.59 3rd 4. Furniture Making 8 6.25 4th 5. Further Education 7 5.47 5th 6. Hair Dresser/Barbing 6 4.69 6th 7. Carpentry and Joinery 5 3.91 7th 8. Bricklaying and Concrete work (Mason work) 4 3.13 8th 9. Wood Machining Operation 4 3.13 “ 10. Graphics Art (Artist) 4 3.13 “ 11. Football Playing 4 3.13 “ 12. Catering Services 3 2.34 9th 13. Photograph and Video Coverage 3 2.34 “ 14. Dyeing and Bleaching 3 2.34 “ 15. Office Assistant 3 2.34 “ 16. Knitting 3 2.34 “ 17. Radio, Television and Appliances Repairs 2 1.56 10th 18. Plumbing and Pipe fitting 2 1.56 “ 19. Ceramic making 2 1.56 “ 20. Book keeping 2 1.56 “ 21. Achaba (Commercial Motorcycling Services) 2 1.56 “ 22. VCD Dubbing and Rental Services 2 1.56 “ 23. Poultry farming 2 1.56 “ 24. Automotive Trade 2 1.56 “ 25. Trading 2 1.56 “ 26. Textile trade 1 0.78 11th 27. Typing or Data Processing 1 0.78 “ 28. Store keeping 1 0.78 “ 29. Yoghurt and Ice Cream Making 1 0.78 “ 30. Bakery making 1 0.78 “ 31. Animal Rearing 1 0.78 “ 32. Black marketing 0 0 12th 33. GSM Telephone Services 0 0 “ 34. Shoe making 0 0 “ 35. Blacksmithing 0 0 “ 36. Horticulture and Gardening Services 0 0 “ 37. Soap making 0 0 “ 38. Lotion and Cream making 0 0 “
Table 2, presents the frequencies, percentages and ranking of the responses of the respondents when requested to identify a vocational training area in which they are interested in pursuing from a list of options provided. The youths chose Computer Maintenance and Operation Works (18.75%), followed by Tailoring (9.38%), then Electrical Installation and Maintenance work (8.59%), Furniture Making (6.25%), Further Education (5.47%), Hair Dresser/Barbing (4.69%), and Carpentry and Joinery (3.91 %). Other training needs options attracted percentages from 3.13% and below, indicating that they were not very popular among the youth.
Research Question Three
How does Gender Influences the Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 Years Old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
Table 3: Frequencies and Percentages of Influence of Gender on Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 years Old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis (n = 128) S/NO. VOCATIONAL TRAINING AREA MALE FEMALE FREQ % FREQ % Vocations Dominated by Male 1. Computer Maintenance and Operation work 14 10.94 10 7.81 2. Tailoring 8 6.25 4 3.13 3. Electrical Installation and Maintenance 7 5.47 4 3.13 4. Work 5 3.91 3 2.34 5. Furniture Making 5 3.91 2 1.56 6. Further Education 4 3.13 1 0.78 7. Carpentry and Joinery 4 3.13 0 0 8. Wood Machining Operator 4 3.13 0 0 9. Graphics Art (Artist) 3 2.34 1 0.78 10. Football Playing 2 1.56 1 0.78 11. Catering Services 2 1.56 1 0.78 12. Photograph and Video Coverage 2 1.56 1 0.78 13. Office Assistant 2 1.56 1 0 14. Plumbing and Pipe Fitting 2 1.56 0 0 15. Achaba (Commercial Motorcycling Services) 2 1.56 0 0 16. Automotive Trade 2 1.56 0 0 17. Trading 1 0.78 0 0 18. Textile Trade 1 0.78 0 0 19. Store Keeping
Yoghurt and Ice Cream Making
1 0.78 0 0 SUB-TOTAL 71 55.47 28 21.88 Vocations Dominated by Females 1. Hair Dresser/barbing 0 0 6 4.69 2. Dyeing and Bleaching 0 0 3 2.34 3. Knitting 0 0 3 2.34 4. Typing or Data Processing 0 0 1 0.78 5. Bakery Making 0 0 1 0.78 6. Animal Rearing 0 0 1 0.78 SUB-TOTAL 0 0 15 11.72 Equal Domination by Sexes 1. Bricklaying and Concrete Work (Mason) 2 1.56 2 1.56 2. Radio, Television and Appliances Repairs 1 0.78 1 0.78 3. Ceramic Making 1 0.78 1 0.78 4. Book Keeping 1 0.78 1 0.78 5. VCD Dubbing and Rental Services 1 0.78 1 0.78 6. Poultry Farming 1 0.78 1 0.78 SUB-TOTAL 7 5.47 7 5.47 Vocations not Chosen by both Sexes 1. Black marketing 0 0 0 0 2. GSM Telephone Services 0 0 0 0 3. Shoe Making 0 0 0 0 4. Blacksmithing 0 0 0 0 5. Horticulture and Gardening Services 0 0 0 0 6. Soap Making 0 0 0 0 7. Lotion and Cream making 0 0 0 0 SUB-TOTAL 0 0 0 0 TOTAL 78 60.94 50 39.06
In Table 3, 50% of the vocations were preferred by males only, while 15.79% of the vocations were preferred by females only. Also 15.79% of the vocations were preferred by both sexes and 18.42% of the vocations were not chosen by both sexes.
Research Question Four
What are the Problems Associated with the Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 Years old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis?
Table 4: Frequencies and Percentages of Problems Associated with Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 Years old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis (n = 128) S/NO. PROBLEMS FACED FREQUENCY PERCENTAGE 1. Lack of Career Guidance 53 41.41 2. Lack of Moral Support 45 35.16 3. Abuse by the Adults 33 25.78 4. Low Income Earning 27 21.09 5. Lack of Financial Support 24 18.75 6. Lack of Involvement in Decision Making 22 17.19 7. Hunger 21 16.41 8. Lack of Employment Security 20 15.63 9. Lack of Recreational Facilities 13 10.16 10. Lack of Health Education 8 6.25 11. Hazard 7 5.47 12. Lack of Legal Support 6 4.69
According to Table 4, the youths had agreed that the major problems associated with their vocational training needs as implied by their percentage response were Lack of Career Guidance (41.41 %), Lack of Moral Support (35.16%), Abuse by the Adults (25.78%), Low Income Earning (21.09%). Others may not be considered as major problems because their percentage responses were below 20%.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSION
Table 1 presents the results of demographic characteristics of 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis. The results indicate higher percentage of male (61.79%) respondent than female (38.21 %) respondents. The low percentage of female respondents could partly be attributed to the low enrollment of females in school in the area of the study. Also the percentage of respondents with age range of 15 - 20 years old was greater than those of 20-25 years old. This may be due to the range of year a student was expected to graduate from either junior or senior secondary school. Because according to NPE revised (2004), it is expected that a child is to be enrolled into primary school when he attained 6 years, that is to say it is expected that by 15 or 18 years, a child must have graduated from either junior or senior secondary school. The results also shows that marital status of most (75.78%) of the respondents are single. This might be due to the nature of environment of the study. Because nowadays parents only give out their son/daughter to marriage when the bride is engage vocationally, that is having a reliable job. Also the educational status from the results shows that most (67.97%) of the respondents attended senior secondary school. This might be attributed to the number of secondary schools that exists in the area of the study, because out of the 22 secondary schools existing in the area, only two terminate at junior secondary school level. The results also shows that most (63.28%) of the respondents are untrained and unemployed. This might be as a result of lack of knowledge of reading, writing and arithmetic ability due to lack of foundation from the scratch. Because Okoro (1993) attributed that vocational education builds on a foundation of good general education.
Table 2 present the results of Preferred Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 years old out-of- school youths in Bauchi Metropolis. The results indicate a relatively high percentage of the participants selecting Computer Maintenance and Operation Work (18.75%). The high percentage observed with this vocation can be attributed to the obvious fact that computer operation and manipulation covers all facets of life, be it social, political, economical, religious, etc. That is to say for any organization or individual that wants to achieve maximum output; it must have to incorporate the use of computer. This is further supported by Chimezie (2003) who argues that "if we are to reap the benefits of science, driven industries, we must develop a computer literate society". Considering this statement, it has become very imperative for all concern to foster computer literacy in all facets of our life today. And this will best be achieved through a sound educational system that takes care of the needs of all citizens. Galadima (2003) acknowledged that "education is the prime creator and conveyor of knowledge in any facet. Tailoring (9.38%) was observed to be the next preferred vocational training needs after Computer Maintenance and Operation Work. This preference could be attributed to the fact that tailoring is a vocation that has been in existence for long and will continue to exist because of the continuous demand for services been rendered by this vocation. That is to say any human being who is sane, he/she must wear dresses, which are usually sown by tailors. Okoro (2003) report that our people have acquired invaluable entrepreneurial skills in tailoring and have in fact taken over this business with resounding success and remarkable ease due to its importance. He further reiterated that nowadays some of the garments sewn locally in Nigeria competes favorably with those sown in Europe and Asia. However, the preferred vocational training need next to tailoring was Electrical Installation and Maintenance Work (8.59%). This observed relatively high percentage could partly be attributed to the technological development we have been experiencing because of the way local craft and manual operation workable materials are always turned to be used electronically. For example, grinding stone, boiling pot, manual typewriter, etc are now been converted to be used electronically. And again there has been an influx of many different types of electronic appliances because of the high demand. Furniture Making (6.25%) was the next preferred vocation that followed Electrical Installation and Maintenance. The observed percentage could partly be attributed to the change in life styles and the relatively improved economic standard of the society. The olden ways of furniture decorations in our midst have changed drastically, both in the rural or urban settings. There is also an increase in the demand for the modern furniture as a result of many marriages that are being contracted almost on weekly basis in the study area and also the raw materials for furniture making are readily available and affordable. Furniture Making was followed by Further Education (5.47%); this was the fifth in the hierarchy of the preferred vocations. This observed percentage might be unconnected with the problem of persistent poor performances of the youths in public examinations such as NECO and W AEC SSCE. Consistently over years less than 10% of the students who finished secondary school in the State proceed to higher institutions. The observed percentage could also be due to the menace of unemployment of skilled manpower and also the poor guidance and counseling services in the secondary schools. Even though, Akubudike (2003) had emphasized that guidance and counseling should be left for the school, because the schools are in better position to spot out students' talents and potentials skills that can be properly tapped. That is to say the youth are aware that opportunities for productive work are growing at a rate far beyond the capabilities of somebody that is educated. Hair Dresser/Barbing (4.69%) was next after Further Education. The observed percentage response could be attributed to the demand for such services as a result of the change in the life style of members of the society. And also the profit derived from such business. Carpentry and Joinery (3.91%) was next after Hair Dresser/Barbing. The observed percentage responses could be attributed to the growing demand for the services rendered by such vocation resulting from the sprang in building projects around.
Table 3 present the results of Influence of Gender on the Vocational Training Needs of 15 – 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis. The results showed that about half (50%) of the vocations were indicated by males only as need areas. These includes Computer Maintenance and Operation Works; Tailoring; Electrical Installation and Maintenance Work; Furniture Making; Further Education; Carpentry and Joinery; Wood Machining Operation; Graphic Art (Artist); Football Playing; Catering Services; Photograph and Video Coverage; Office Assistant; Plumbing and Pipe Fitting; Achaba; Automotive Trade; Trading; Textile Trade; Store Keeping; and Yoghurt and Ice Cream Making. This observed high percentage response could be attributed to the nature of vocations which are mostly male-oriented in the environment of the study. These are then followed by vocations indicated by females only as need areas. They include Hair Dresser/Barbing, Dyeing and Bleaching, Knitting, Typing or Data Processing, Bakery Making and Animal Rearing. This observed percentage can be attributed to the fact that these are female-oriented vocations in environment of the study. While the vocational need areas that attract equal response proportion by both sexes, include, Bricklaying and Concrete Work, Radio, Television and Appliances Repairs, Ceramic Making, Book Keeping, VCD Dubbing and Rental Services, and Poultry Farming. One interesting thing about this result was the equal response of both sexes in Bricklaying and Concrete Work, Radio, Television and Appliances Repairs which are usually regarded as male-oriented vocations in the area of the study. Vocational need areas that were not preferred by both sexes includes; Black Marketing; GSM Telephone Services; Shoe Making; Blacksmithing; Horticulture and Gardening Services; Soap Making; and Lotion and Cream Making.
Table 4 presents the results of Problems Associated with the Vocational Training Needs of 15 - 25 Years old Out-of-School Youths in Bauchi Metropolis. The results indicate a high percentage in Lack of Career Guidance (41.41 %). The high percentage observed with this problem could be attributed to the experience of most of the respondents during their secondary schools' where the guidance and counseling services are very inadequate. At the age between 15 and 25 years, it is widely believed that for someone to be self-reliant, he/she must be guided appropriately so that at the end, he/she will turn out to be productive to himself and the society at large. Akubudike (2003) has argued that proper guidance and counseling is needed to channel students' interest appropriately. Lack of Career Guidance was followed by Lack of Moral Support (35.16%). This observed percentage response could be attributed to the non-challant attitude shown by some parents towards their children education, especially parents who lack formal education. For example, most of the parents do not care to check on their wards academic performance nor check on what they are really doing after graduation so that they can boost their moral or correct them where necessary. Lack of Moral Support was further followed by Abuse by Adults (25.78%). This observed percentage response can be attributed to the societal believe that for the younger ones to be of good character, they must show obedience to adults, especially their close relations, even when such obedience would be at their own disadvantage. Considering this situation critically, instead of this believe to yield any positive result, it usually turned out to be a measure problem that makes the younger ones sometimes to be running away from places where they are receiving training. At the end the situation turns out to be a problem to both the youth themselves and the society at large. Abuse by Adults was followed by Low Income Earning (21.09%). This observed percentage can be attributed to the lack of adequate intervention from the government in supplementing the trainees with an allowances to cushion their sufferings because for a trainer to train a trainee and also forfeit part of his profit to the trainee as income is always not possible in our society.
Based on the findings of the study, the following conclusions were made: (a) The youth were generally between the ages of 15 - 20 years, (b) Majority of the youths in the metropolis want to pursue careers in Computer Maintenance and Operation Works, (c) About half (19 out of 38) of the vocations considered were preferred by males only, (d) 15.79% (6 out of 38) of the vocations were preferred by females only, and (e) The youths face many problems with their vocational training needs. The major ones were Lack of Career Guidance, Lack of Moral Support and Abuse by Adults. Based on this therefore, it was recommended that Government, especially Bauchi State Government/Individuals (1) should provide vocational training programmes in Computer Maintenance and Operation Works for the 15 - 25 years old out-of-school youths in Bauchi Metropolis, (2) should encourage the establishment of youth clubs (e.g. Farming Club, Computer Literacy Club, etc.) and youth movements in the metropolis in order to serve as an eye opener for their future career opportunities, (3) should provide the necessary leadership, financial and other logistical support to the youths so that they can develop and manage self-sustaining enterprises that can create employment in the metropolis, (4) should provide a means of bridging the gap that exists between schools and industry in the State.
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