UKH Holds First Internship Day
Students take a first step into their career path
An overwhelming majority of students from the University of KurdistanHawler (UKH) attended the first UKH Internship Day, an unprecedented event in Kurdistan and Iraq.
The Internship day was hosted by the university and organized and sponsored by Erbil Manpower Company (EMP), a local Kurdish company specialized in Recruiting and HR services among other business services. The event took place at the university campus on Wednesday, May 22, 2013 from 12:00 to 18:00 hrs.
Around 20 companies were given a stand of their own at the university’s Admin Building, known among “the UKH’ians” as “the Blue Building”. The companies, who were interested in hiring interns from the UKH students, were meeting with the job seeking students to identify the talents and potential leaders for their businesses.
UKH students, known for their English language skills, strong academic base and high level of energy and interest in working in the private sector, are more attractive to business owners who are seeking for local skills and qualifications in a country where the education system does rarely create real talents.
Ali Awni, HR and Recruiting Coordinator at EMP, who was managing the company’s stand at the event, told the Kurdish Globe that their clients, most of whom are international companies in oil & gas, banking, manufacturing and telecom industries, are having difficult times hiring locals who have strong academic background and potential to be part of a successful team.
“This is a unique opportunity for both students and employers to get to know each other,” Awni told the Globe. “Students are able to find a temporary job during their summer vacation, both to get acquainted with the business environment and improve their practical skills, and also to create a connection with the private sector and try to secure a full time job after graduation; while employers will have a chance to hire young and energetic students as interns who are willing to work for couple months free of charge, and also to evaluate their potentials and offer permanent jobs for those who prove their capabilities during this period.”
The participating companies were ranging from lo- cal to international, small to corporate-size and from different industries.
The idea behind the internship day, according to Sazan Mandalawi, the PR and Marketing Director of the UKH, was to introduce students to business environment.
“Every student who can work in a company as an intern for a period of six weeks, 20 hours per week, will get a certificate from the university,” Mandalawi stated. “We are trying with the management of the university to make such an internship certificate part of graduation requirements.”
On Tuesday, the day before the Internship Day, Aseel Anton, a management specialist and EMP’s Business Development Consultant delivered a seminar to more than 50 UKH students. Anton talked about the idea of internship, how to participate in an internship fair, some tips about resume preparation and job interview. She also shared her internship story and an overview of her own career path and success story.
Following the seminar, Zhala Sabir, Catchment Manager of the USAID Foras Iraq in Erbil, also delivered a short speech about the Foras Program, its objectives and activities, which are aimed at improving employment in Iraq.
The event hosting company also managed a resume preparation assistance desk at the UKH on the day of the event to help the participating students prepare their resumes for the fair.
Erbil Manpower (EMP) staff members assist students from the University of Kurdistan - Hawler (UKH) with their applications for internship opportunities at the first UKH Internship Day at the university's campus in Erbil on Wednesday, May 22, 2013.