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Entrepreneurship, skills acquisition, tools for  poverty reduction – Nasarawa varsity Don

Entrepreneurship, skills acquisition, tools for  poverty reduction – Nasarawa varsity Don

By Faith Awa Maji

As the scourge of economic downturn continues to negatively impact on nations across the world, a Senior Lecturer at the Entrepreneurship Department, Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), Dr. Vincent Paul, has advocated entrepreneurship and skills acquisition as essential tools in fighting the menace.

He spoke last Saturday in his keynote address at the 2024 Nzeh Mada socio-cultural annual festival tagged “NZEH MADA FESTIVAL OF UNITY AND PROGRESS” held at Kenneibeh Centre, Garaku, Kokona Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.

The theme of his address was, “Entrepreneurship and Skill Acquisition as Tool for Reducing Poverty in the Society.” 

According to the Senior Lecturer, “this homily is pertinent given the notion that is frequently associated with “poverty.” The concept transcends the common perception of lack of material things. Poverty goes beyond a lack of having resources at one’s disposal, as no one is completely poor in the world in everything.

“Everyone is created with one or more skills according to the desires of God. Your ability as an individual to identify such gift is what many people lack, and, consequently, come to the conclusion that they are poor. People are expected to utilize whatever skill they are blessed with to creatively and innovatively make available an enterprise for themselves and in service of their immediate environment, irrespective of the kind of venture they create.

“Entrepreneurship is centred around the identification of a marketable need in the society. It is important to note that competencies embedded in individuals can be put into use by creating value through meeting societal needs in exchange for economic benefits, and at the same time, solving particular societal problems. It can then be seen that poverty is an impermanent state that depends on the individual marketing themselves in terms of what they can offer in exchange for income through their mindset.

“This is especially crucial given the current state of the country with an acute lack of paid jobs and economic hardships. In fact, even those engaged in paid employment hardly cope in today’s Nigeria. People therefore, especially the youth, are expected to identify and utilize their skills for engagement in commercial activities with keen interest in generating income legitimately. Attitude plays an important role, in that the beneficial use of skills depends to a large extent on the readiness and confidence of the individual in the optimal exploitation of their ability.

“An effective and efficient exploitation of entrepreneurial skills is a potent means of creating a flow of income that would support a viable livelihood. Such a talk is therefore apt, in light of the prevalent high rate of idleness, economic hardships and unemployment”, Dr Vincent opened.

Paul further explained that entrepreneurship is concerned with the identification of gaps and business opportunities in one’s immediate environment and bringing together the necessary resources in an innovative way noting the three main concepts in entrepreneurship to include, evaluating opportunities, securing resources, and growing and sustaining the enterprise.

“It plays a vital role in driving economic growth, promoting innovation, and creating employment opportunities for citizens”, he said.

He noted further that developing diverse skills can enhance an individual’s ability to navigate challenges, grab opportunities and succeed in entrepreneurial endeavours. “The lack of applicable skill, therefore, can leave an individual in a deprived “, he noted. 

“Skill acquisition plays a crucial role in poverty reduction by empowering individuals to improve their economic circumstances through income generation. One of such ways is through Job Creation. Through skill acquisition, entrepreneurship fosters job creation by enabling individuals to start their own businesses. When people put their skill into good use, they can create and manage businesses, and as a result, employ themselves and others, and in the process, reduce unemployment rate and poverty levels”, Dr. Vincent Paul further advised. 

The event had in attendance, illustrious sons and daughters of Mada nation including a former Accountant-General of Nasarawa State, Dr. Zaka Ledkwi Yakubu; royal fathers among others.

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