The University of Lagos Mass Communication Alumni Association (UMCAA) has held its first mentoring session for new members.
The initiative became necessary to enhance the fresh graduates’ preparedness for the increasingly competitive labour market.
The Programme Coordinator, Dr. Kehinde Oyesomi, the Vice- President of UMCAA, stated that the programme was put together to increase the fresh graduates’ institutional knowledge and understanding of how the labour market works, increase their confidence and position them for professional development opportunities.
“This mentoring programme is an avenue for you as fresh graduates to receive guidance and support from respected members of UMCAA community, who are in the business of mentoring the next generation,” she said.
The session was facilitated by members of the association who have distinguished themselves in their chosen endeavours, like: veteran journalist, Lekan Otufodurin, seasoned public relations professional, Eniola Mayowa, and data-centric digital marketing genius, Oluwatayo Alofun.
In his presentation, ‘Understanding the Media Job Terrain’, Otufodunrin, the Executive Director, Media Career Development Network, advised the fresh graduate not to limit themselves to broadcasting, public relations or advertising, but as multimedia professionals, as the media industry cuts across various areas of specialisation which they were taught in school.
“The specialisation in school is necessary for academic purpose, but in the world of work, you must have the capacity to do a bit of everything to enhance your job search opportunities,” he said. Using real life experiences, he advised the graduates to take internship opportunities, where they are available and show their skills.
Mayowa, the Chief Operating Officer at Stepcraft Nigeria Limited, underscored the place of knowledge, skills, learning and mentorship as the factors to success, as these apply to both employment and entrepreneurship. She admonished the graduates to be multi-skilled and be ready to add value as these will stand them out anywhere.
Speaking on ‘Skills and Outlook for the New Media Age’, Alofun highlighted the components of the digital space and outlined the various skills that are needed to thrive in that field. He stated that as mass communication graduates, they are at an advantage to do well in the digital space. This is because they have been equipped with knowledge on behavior analysis, content and platform development, and campaign analysis. “Whatever your major – print (writing for the news media); broadcast journalism, public relations (reputation management) and advertising (promotions and branding) – you are in the business of content,” he said.
The President of UMCAA, Mr. Adewale Williams in his remarks, congratulated the fresh graduates and encouraged them to consider entrepreneurship as the Association would plan another such mentoring sessions for those who are interested in having their own business.
Speaking on behalf of the 2021 set, also referred to as the Vendicci, Adeyi Oluwademilade, described the mentorship programme as insightful and enlightening, and thanked the facilitators for sharing their knowledge and experience.