At a time when new discoveries and developments are daily occurrences, the worlds of academia and business should be best buddies. For businesses looking to stay on top, it makes sense to tap into fresh insights from tomorrow’s professionals. For students, what better way is there to prepare for their future than to shape their ideas with first-hand knowledge in their preferred areas of employment?
The process of bringing those worlds together continues to pose challenges. Start-ups and small businesses, the backbone of the Maltese economy, do not have the HR departments and resources necessary to organise such exchanges. The gap between these companies and students is difficult to overcome. However, steps are being taken to change the situation.
Go&Learn+ is providing a bridge between education and industry through an online platform that catalogues training seminars and company visits for students and educators in a multitude of sectors. The initiative has garnered a slew of supporters. 17 agencies in Europe and beyond are listed on the site, opening their doors to others. Among those are the Maltese companies, Thought3D, ZAAR, and The Galley, to name but a few.
Locally, the Malta University Holding Company and the Malta Business Bureau, the teams behind Go&Learn+, have worked together to create two new circuits involving groups of seminars, visits and programmes. One is dedicated to ICT for business, leisure and commodity, seeing students visit and learn from the people at Altaro, Scope Solutions, MightyBox, Trilith Entertainment, and Flat Number. The second circuit is related to food, involving companies such as Elty Food, Benna, Fifth Flavour, Da Vinci Pasticceria, and Contribute Water. Students reported that the visits were insightful, helping them to gain a better understanding of the sector and its nuances. In the case of the food circuit, it even proved popular with students from Italy who organised a trip to Malta to visit the companies involved.
The reality is that learning cannot be separated from work. The lack of communication between these endeavours has unfortunately contributed to a skills gap that threatens economic growth and employment. Programmes like Go&Learn+ are working towards remedying that situation. Continued support is essential.
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