Are you good at marketing yourself to prospective employers? That is what Bahrain Polytechnic students have proven to be. “Polytechnic students are excellent” said one of the companies that attended the Graduate Skills Show that was organized by Bahrain Polytechnic. The event which was one of a kind in the Kingdom of Bahrain was held on June 30th at the Polytechnic campus and was organized by its Career and Employment Centre.
In this event sixty near graduates from different majors had the opportunity to meet with prospective employers, hiring managers and representatives from various sectors in Bahrain such as GPIC, Standard Chartered Bank and ACK Solutions to present their experiences, achievements and skills on stage during the five-hour event. The idea of the event was taken from the “Angel Investors” concept of matching innovators with investors. An ‘elevator pitch’ is developed by each student to succinctly sell the benefits that they will bring to an employer in only 3 minutes. This was followed by individual interviews with the companies.
Cormac MacMahon, Bahrain Polytechnic’s Dean of Business commented: “The way the Polytechnic teaches its students focuses on not only developing their technical skills but their employability skills. These are the soft skills that are necessary for anyone to be successful in their career, such communication skills, problem solving and others.” “A picture is worth a thousand words” he went on to explain. “Students presented themselves to employers from reputable companies, rather than the traditional way of handing in their CV with a chance of employers not reading it. This technique allows the HR managers to examine and explore the competencies that the students have, making it a more attractive method to provide potential jobs for the students,” he concluded.
The Graduate Skills Show was perceived positively by both employers and students alike: One of the students who performed on stage expressed his gratitude to the Polytechnic and said: “If I look at myself 4 years back, I was a shy person and had never done any presentations. I see all the employability skills in me and they grow in everything I do.”
Though this was the first time, based on the feedback from participants, the Polytechnic plans to run this event yearly. Dr. Chris Coutts, Bahrain Polytechnic’s Acting Director of Academic Development thanked the visiting companies which took their time to attend the event. She also thanked the ACEO Dr Mohamed Al Aseeri for his continuous support, the staff and students for their participation and efforts to keep Bahrain Polytechnic in line with the Bahrain 2030 vision.