Proper career guidance has the potential to address the issues on job-skill mismatch.

This is the central issue for discussion on the 3rd Regional Career Advocacy Congress (RCAC) led by the Department of Labor and Employment Davao Region (DOLE-XI) which opened yesterday, May 25 to 26, 2015 at Kadayawan Hall, NCCC Mall.

DOLE Davao regional director Joffrey M. Suyao said the global phenomenon on job-skill mismatch  is a matter affecting the regional employment scenario, thus there is urgency to discuss the issue together with as many stakeholders possible.

“The congress is the proper venue to discuss relevant matters on supply and demand of work as it gathers the government agencies, academe, network of guidance counselors, the private sector with the aim to align curriculum and skill-need of the industry,” Suyao said.

Now on its 3rd year, the RCAC aims to equip career advocacy allies with ample knowledge on new concepts and strategies for career guidance in order to effectively lead students in choosing the right career path and finding the right job.

Guidance counselors from public schools and selected private schools in Davao Region and selected students leaders were invited to join the event.

“Guidance counselors and career advocates facilitate students to arrive with informed decisions in choosing their career that’s why it is important they should be well informed and updated with the most recent development affecting skills requirement of the industry,” said Suyao.

Davao City first district representative Karlo B. Nograles, the keynote speaker, said guidance counselors and career advocates have the unique responsibility in ensuring appropriate employment.

“More importantly, they (guidance counselors) lay the foundation for gainful, productive and fulfilling careers,” Nograles said.

“We have a law requiring private schools to employ guidance counselor, and this has been complied with. However, we have a dilemma for the public schools because not all public high school has registered  guidance counselor,” he said.

Nograles added that this should be the challenge to DepEd to fill-in qualified guidance counselors in every school particularly that we are now entering the K-to-12 curriculum.

In the forum, guidance counselors will also be updated with the latest Labor Market Information (LMI) from various industries and the trends in the national and global contexts for their use in efficient delivery of career guidance to the students and jobseekers.

“We will take a closer look at the in-demand and hard-to-fill jobs; skills surplus and shortages in the region as maybe input to K-12 program, and  improvement of youth unemployment,” Suyao said.(Sherwin B. Manual/DOLE XI)