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‘Stem should be supported by institutions’


AN intellectual property educator at the National University of Science and Technology (Nust) has raised concern over the lack of capacity in local universities and industry to support science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) students.


Aleck Ncube told Southern Eye on the side lines of the Higher and Tertiary Education conference held in Bulawayo on Tuesday that the lack of capacity to support Stem students will produce graduates, who will only benefit industries in foreign countries.

“We do not have the industry to support Stem at the moment and, as universities we lack resources that will make students flourish in their studies,” he said.

Ncube said the programme requires a holistic approach for it to be relevant.

“The government must play a huge role in ensuring that the industry is ready to train Stem students, when they go on attachment and, as universities, we also need to have the apparatus for the learning process.”

“I am not castigating Stem, but I want us to appreciate that, as a country, at the moment, there is need to ensure that there is an industry to go to after graduation, otherwise graduates will continue to flock to foreign countries and better other economies.”

Nust director of communications and marketing, Felix Moyo echoed similar sentiments, saying Stem needs more support.

“Stem needs a lot of support in universities. We have a faculty of applied sciences at Nust, but we need a lot of assistance with equipment so that students can polish their skills,” he said.

“With Stem, we are taking steps in the right direction because we need such programmes for the country’s development,” he said.

Stem is a government programme, which seeks to improve the uptake of science subjects in higher education, which are at the core of most development plans. The government has given out scholarships to support students studying in these disciplines across the country.

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