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7 Ways Learning a Foreign Language can Improve Your Life

Nigeria Today – Staff Writer

“Learning a foreign language can enhance your life in so many ways. It can help improve things like health, job opportunities, relationships and personal development. Unfortunately, and maybe generally, those of English-speaking heritage are notoriously lazy when it comes to learning a language other than our own. Once you can speak another language, it can open so many doors. We’ve listed seven excellent reasons as to why you should learn a foreign language.”(more)

Nigerian Graduates Need 21st Century Skills to Be Employed – Pearson

Vanguard – Dayo Adesulu

“With approximately 11 million people between the ages of 15 and 34 out of work in Nigeria, it is becoming more important than ever to tackle the country’s youth unemployment challenge with practical and effective solutions…employers the world over complain that despite high youth unemployment rates, finding school leavers and graduates with the skills demanded by modern workplaces is increasingly difficult. Nigeria, like many other countries, has an oversupply of tertiary graduates that fail to possess the 21st Century skills and competencies employers so often require – teamwork, innovation, communication skills and initiative, to name just a few…Embedding these skills in curricula will help create a workforce that has the attributes necessary to meet the demands of a global and increasingly connected labour market.”(more)

Boko Haram violence forces one million children out of school: U.N.

Reuters – Kieran Guilbert

“Violence in northeast Nigeria and neighboring countries targeted by Boko Haram has forced more than one million children out of school, leaving them prey to abuse, abduction and recruitment by armed groups, the United Nations said on Tuesday. More than 2,000 schools in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger remain closed due to the conflict and hundreds have been looted, damaged or destroyed, said the U.N. children’s agency UNICEF. While hundreds of schools in northeast Nigeria have reopened in recent months, insecurity and fear of violence are preventing many teachers from resuming classes and discouraging parents from sending their children back to school, according to UNICEF. Boko Haram is mostly based in northeast Nigeria but the militant group has this year intensified its campaign, setting up camps and launching attacks in neighboring Cameroon, Chad and Niger in its drive to carve out an Islamist caliphate.”(more)

Nigeria: 21st Century Education for Nigeria

AllAfrica.com – Yusuf Al-Hassan

“STEAM is a programme based on the idea of educating students in five specific disciplines. They are, science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics, in an interdisciplinary and applied approach. Rather than teach the five disciplines as separate and discrete subjects, STEAM integrates them into a cohesive learning program based on real-world applications…For Nigeria to compete effectively educationally and achieve Education “For All”, and close the skill gaps now and in future, STEAM is the answer to what is arguably the most serious educational problem Nigeria faces as a nation…A science, technology-based education structure would put Nigeria on the mark for global competition.”(more)

Chinese Language In Nigeria Is Increasingly Popular As China-Africa Economic Relations Deepen

The International Business Times – By Michelle FlorCruz

“The study of the Chinese language has become increasingly popular among young students in Lagos, Nigeria. As the West African nation continues to foster economic relations with China, students say learning the language makes them more competitive in the job markets in the East and at home. The demand for learning Chinese, specifically Mandarin, has increased all over the world as the country is seen as a major player in economics, healthcare and politics. Many students in the West caught on to this trend about a decade ago. In 2008, Asia Society, a New York-based Asia-focused educational organization, reported that enrollment in Chinese programs among K-12 level students grew 200 percent over a four-year period from 2004-2008. In Nigeria, and other African nations where there is a significant Chinese expat population, learning Chinese as a way to be more competitive in the job market is still relatively new. Upon graduating in 2014 with a degree in microbiology from Lagos State University, Jolade Oshodi, after being exposed to Chinese pop culture, decided to pursue a graduate degree at the University of Lagos’ Confucius Institute, an educational organization affiliated with China’s own Ministry of Education.”(more)

World Bank Supports Improved Maternal, Child Health in Nigeria With $500m

The Business World – Benjamin Orisemeke

“The World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors has approved a $500 million International Development Association (IDA) credit to significantly improve maternal, child and nutrition health services for women and children in Nigeria. The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. By improving access to higher quality health services, the new development financing will help Nigeria to achieve its “Saving One Million Lives (SOML) Initiative,” which was launched by the Federal Ministry of Health in October 2012 to save the lives of the more than 900,000 women and children who die every year in Nigeria from largely preventable causes. Benjamin Loevinsohn, lead health specialist and task team leader for the new project, said that “Saving One Million Lives is a bold response from the Nigerian government to improve the health of the country’s mothers and children so they can survive illness and thrive. This, in turn, will also contribute to the social and economic development of Africa’s largest economy.” Nigeria accounts for 14 per cent of all annual maternal deaths worldwide, second only to India at 17 per cent . Similarly, it also accounts for 13 per cent of all global deaths of children under the age of five years, again second only to India at 21 per cent.”(more)