Article By: MekongSkills2Work
Naw Naw, instructor from one of the MLCs, our instructor of the month, takes the lead in her institution to show how Work-Based Learning can be a way of giving students a hands-on experience or even career answers.
In August, when there was a Work-Based Learning workshop organized for instructors on the MekongSkills2Work Network in Thailand, one of the participants was Naw Naw.
“When I came back from Thailand, I arranged work exposure with my fifth year students…at that time, they need to do a Business Strategy project for their final assessment.”
The students were enthusiastic because not only that they got to be in a workplace and got to imagine what it was like to be working there, but they could also think further than what they have observed, like how the business is going to roll out.
“…by learning about the challenges in the real workplace, they came up with their initiatives, innovative ideas and solutions based on these challenges. Consequently, they did their project.”
Naw Naw has successfully implemented the work-based learning in her class, which inspired both instructors and students to merge academic world with the world of work.
She introduced this approach to 2 instructors in her institution, whom are really interested in implementing this solution in their classes as well.
The picture is completed when 3 elements are connected. The instructors got the students engaged. What are we missing here?
“I connected with one industry from Mandalay near my current city.”
The immediate effect of building relationships with industry partners is the convenience in arranging work-based learning, but a long-term effect is less effort for the students to transition to the workplace in the future.
Naw Naw proved to us that if things keep developing this way, work-base learning can be a way for students to explore themselves in the environment that can give them the best answer.
“I’m a little afraid to do this with younger students, like first year students”. However, when they learned about this activity, they got interested.
“What is Work-Based Learning, teacher?”
“What did you do?”
“Why does our university need this?”
Why is it important that students get work experience before they actually start their professional life?
Instead of giving them the answer, why don’t we show them how and where best to find the answer themselves?