Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Access for Training and Employment Opportunities by Kenyan Youth.
Waswa, Gwen M.
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This study addresses the issues facing the youth on access to ICT training and employment. It specifically addresses the case of the youth living in Nairobi province. It adapts the definition of a youth from the Kenya National Human Development Report, that defines a youth as people resident in Kenya who are between 15 to 35 years old (KNHDR, 2009). The objectives of the study were to establish the education level attained by the unemployed youth, to identify the benefits attained by the youth having the ICT skills, to identify the challenges faced by the youth in relation to ICT employment and training at all levels of education and to propose a framework for addressing school and unemployed youth access to ICT employment opportunities. The research design adapted in this study is quantitative design. In this design, structured questionnaires were prepared in line with the objectives and skillful research assistants were used to collect data from randomly selected household in Nairobi province. The target population for this study was the unemployed youths but economically active group, living in Nairobi province as defined in 2009 population and housing census. These are youth living in the four districts of Nairobi province namely; Nairobi West, Nairobi East, Nairobi North and Westland. The findings of the study revealed that majority of the youth seeking for employment are between the ages of 21-25 years old (55%). It also revealed that 57% of the unemployed youth lack ICT training. Out of the remaining 43% that have ICT training, 28% have basic computer application packages such as Microsoft office. The study proposes a framework that can be used by the youth to easily access ICT training and employment in Kenya. It also suggests an implementation matrix that is geared towards addressing the issue on youth access to ICT training and employment in Kenya. According to this framework, ICT training should be enshrined in the school curriculum. It should start from primary, secondary and tertiary for those youth in school. For those out of school without formal education some basic ICT training course can be offered that will lead to professional certification.