Graduate Internship Scheme, GIS, one of the safety interventions of the defunct Subsidy Re-investment and Empowerment Programme, SURE-P, has attracted 31,781 firms across the country.
Director of GIS, Peter Papka stated this yesterday at orientation training for interns and representatives of firms in Yenagoa, the capital of Bayelsa State.
No fewer than 100 graduates are participating in the three-day programme in Yenagoa described by one of the consultants, Jessica Obasi, described as the highest number of any of the programmers elsewhere in the country.
Papka, who was represented by Ifedinkor Bridget Ngozi, said 305,780 graduates have registered for the programme while 25,186 graduates have been deployed to firms.
He said that the scheme “is contributing to renewed growth of small and medium enterprises, SMEs and cooperative societies through increased competent and skilled manpower.”
Further, he said so far, 9,387 interns have exited the scheme and over 1,000 of them had secured jobs or started their own businesses while some have also won the YouWin grants to expand their businesses.
Papka said the orientation training would enable the interns to develop useful skills and positive work habits, provide opportunity to share experiences, expose them to opportunities for life after internship and contribute to service delivery and performance.
Another consultant, Christopher Okon, said the interns are willing to learn and add value to themselves saying that they need proper counsel to focus on the value of the programme and not just the stipends.
A participant, Ayah Mekedibe said he wants to learn so that he can be an employer of labour while Mina Alagoa expressed appreciation to the Federal Government for the opportunity to make herself useful and contribute to the society.