THE STUDENT INDUSTRIAL WORK EXPERIENCE SCHEME
Ikuvbogie Francis Osadebamwen
Head of Department
The Student Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES) is a Skills Training Program designed to Prepare and expose Students of Universities, Polytechnics, Colleges of Technology, Colleges of Agriculture and Colleges of Education for the Industrial work situation they are likely to meet after graduation. The Scheme affords Students the opportunity of familiarizing and exposing themselves to handling equipment and machinery that are usually not available in their Institutions.
Before the establishment of the Scheme, there was a Growing concern that graduates of pour institutions of Higher learning lacked adequate practical knowledge and That the theoretical education in higher institutions was not responsive to the needs of the employers of labor.
It is against the background that the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) Initiated, designed and introduced SIWES Scheme in 1973 To acquaint Students with the Skills of handling Industrial Equipment and machinery.
The Industrial Training Fund (ITF) solely funded the Scheme During its formative years. However, due to financial constraints, The Fund withdrew from the Scheme in 1978. The Federal Government nothing the significance of the Skills training handed The management of the Scheme to the National Universities Commission (NUC) and the National board for Technical Education (NBTE) in 1979. In November, 1984 management and implementation Of the Scheme was again reverted to the ITF with the funding to be solely Borne by the federal Government.
OBJECTIVES OF SIWES
Specifically, the objectives of the Student Industrial Work Experience (SIWES) are to:
a) Provide avenue for Students in Institutions of higher Learning to acquire industrial skills and Experience in their course study;
b) It Expose Student to work methods and Techniques in handling equipment and machinery that may not available in their institutions;
c) Make the Transition from school to the work easier, and enhance Students contacts for later job placement;
d) It provides Students with an opportunity to apply their knowledge in real work situation thereby bridging the gap between theory and practice; and
e) Enlist and Strengthen Employers involvement in the entire educational process
and prepare Student for employment after graduation.
THE INDUSTRIAL TRAINING FUND
- Formulates policies and guidelines on SIWES for distribution to all SIWES participating bodies, institutions and companies involved
- Regularly involve in organizing orientation programs for Students prior to their Attachment;
- Receive and process Master and placement list from the institutions through their Supervisory Agencies i.e. (NUC, NBTE, NCCE);
- Supervise Students on Industrial Attachment;
- Disburse Supervisory and Students Allowances by e-payment.
- Organize Biennial SIWES National Conference and SIWES Review meetings;
- Provide Insurance cover for Students on attachment;
- Provides logistics and materials necessary for effective administration of the Scheme.
- Ensure visitation (tours) of ITF Officers to the supervising Agencies, Institutions, Employers and Students on attachment;
- Provide information on companies for attachment and assist in the Industrial placement of Students;
- Continuously review and carry out research into the operation of the Scheme;
- Vet, process and verify Students’ logbooks and ITF forms 8.
BODIES INVOLVED IN THE MANAGEMENT OF SIWES PROGRAMME AND THEIR ROLES
The Federal Government of Nigeria;
· The Industrial Training Fund (ITF);
· National Universities Commission (NUC);
· National Board for Technology Education (NBTE);
· National Commission for Colleges of Education (NCCE);
· Institution of higher learning; and The employers of Labor
The bodies have Specific roles assigned to them in administration and
Management of SIWES.
FEDERAL GOVERNMENT OF NIGERIA
- Provides adequate funds to the Industrial Training fund through
the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade & Investment for the Scheme.
- Make it mandatory for all Ministries, Companies and Parastatals to offer places for the attachment of students in accordance with the provision of decree No. 47 of 1971 as amended in 2011. The relevant provisions of the amended acts are as follows:
Section 7A (1) (b) stipulate as follows:
Shall Accept Students for Industrial Attachment purposes
The Decree under section 7A (2) stipulate penalties in default of section 7A (1) (b).
Section 7A (2)
“Any employer who is in breach of the provision of the sub-section (1) of this section shall be guilty of an offence under this act and liable to conviction:
- In the case of a cooperate body, to a fine of Five Hundred Thousand Naira (500,000.00) for the first breach and one million Naira (1,000,000.00) for subsequent breach; and
- In the case of Chief Executive, Secretary, or other Principal Officers of the company, to a fine of Fifty Thousand Naira (50,000.00) or two years imprisonment for the first breach and three years imprisonment without option of a fine for each subsequent breach.