Press Release
June 9, 2011


Senator Edgardo J. Angara, chair of the Senate Committee on Education, Arts and Culture, underscored the need to intensify career guidance and counseling programs in all secondary schools to help students make the right career choices.

Angara issued the statement amid the escalating rate of underemployment and unemployment among the youth. Citing data from the National Statistics Office, he said that young Filipinos aged 15 to 24 dominated the number of underemployed and unemployed. In addition, one-third, or 32.5 percent, of the unemployed were high school graduates.

"Aside from our outdated curricula, one of the reasons for job and skills mismatch, as well as underemployment, is lack of information. Students are not properly advised on which courses can help them land viable employment after graduation. Most of them end up taking courses based on popularity," Angara said.

"We ought to have a career guidance program that can generate credible job forecasts highlighting in-demand and hard-to-fill occupations in industries projected to be the main source of employment for the next 10 years. This will help students choose the appropriate career path based on their interest and competency, as well as the market demand," he added.

The Labor Force Survey (LFS) conducted in January 2011 shows that underemployed Filipinos total 7.1 million, translating to an underemployment rate of 19.4 percent. Moreover, out of 500,000 graduates this year, 95,000 are nursing graduates who cannot find relevant jobs.

According to the Commission on Higher Education (CHEd), vacancies are hard to fill in the following sectors: business process outsourcing, agribusiness, tourism, mining, information technology, health & wellness and cyber services. This is attributed to the mismatch between employees' education and the qualifications required by their occupation.

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