Student Placement Programme – a pivotal foundation to gain specific skills beyond the academic environment
Written by Jason Zammit
Work placements serve as a pivotal foundation for students to gain specific skills related to their course of studies and career choice by providing opportunities towards live projects and corporate exposure.
Future employers want to see more than just a degree on a CV. Organisations also want to see hands on experience in given areas. Most Organisations, regardless of their size prefer employing someone that has experience of the workplace. This approach reflects an aptitude and a drive by students to gain pragmatic workplace exposure beyond their course of studies. From an Organisational perspective, it also contributes to reducing the learning curve when a newcomer enters the job market after graduation.
And here is where MITA comes in; for another year launching the Student Placement Programme on the 23rd February 2022.
Gently introducing students to the world of work, the placement helps students to learn the dos and don’ts, in a hands-on way, becoming more workplace savvy and learn to navigate through the everyday operations within an organisation. Being an opportunity to learn the skills required to thrive in the workplace environment, the student placement programme helps to identify one’s own skills and potentially even highlight the areas that one is inspired to work on. Such an opportunity provides an overall understanding for continuous improvement and taking on interesting and new challenges and responsibilities. Gaining new skills also boosts confidence in students and helps in understanding the significance of productivity and high-quality work.
Future employers are looking for more than just technical skills and knowledge of a degree discipline. Organisations value skills such as communication, the ability to work in a team and challenging new tasks. Therefore, students who gain and develop these skills during work placement have a real advantage in the long run.
Besides being a building block for students, the programme helps to bridge the skills required, helping in the supply and demand for ICT skills within the labour market. During the past four years, 200 employers participated while over 1455 students had a workplace experience under the programme.
Participating Organisations are financially supported. For employers who operate in the Private Sector, MITA will reimburse 75% of the students’ basic salary while employers who operate in the Public and Voluntary Sectors will be reimbursed 100% of the students’ basic salary. The student placement programme runs during the summer period for eleven weeks, set on a thirty-hour working week.
Although it is clear the main aim of a placement is to offer students the practical experience under their belt, the benefits to employers can be also beneficial. Being a success story, most students who participated under the programme were offered fulltime jobs at the end of their course of studies.
Students under the programme bring a lot of fresh ideas to the organisation; being a great asset in terms of thinking outside the box and bringing new imaginative ideas which could help organisations grow. Exciting new ideas that students can bring along can be just what an Organisation needs to move to the next level. By taking on a returning placement student who is now graduated, businesses can be sure the employee will fit into the organisation and won’t have to spend time easing graduates into the role as they already have experience working with the company. Overall, the opportunity for Organisations to participate under the programme could lead in finding that one off employee who will drive your business forward.