I am not saying that industrialization is playing hard ball. True, we all need to at least earn a proportional amount of money to survive. That is the jack of all trades in gaining access to food, shelter, everything practically. Given these circumstances with the fact that we are still a developing country, our government and the other sectors need to think fast. The latest statistics offered by the National Statistics Office showed a breakdown of the industry sector – the sector where the employed are categorized into.
Figure 1. January 2008 Industry Sector
As shown in Figure 1, majority of the people working in our country are focused on the three sectors – agriculture, industry, and services. Jobs offered in these sectors could be any of the following such as agriculture, hunting, forestry, fishing, mining, quarrying, manufacturing, electricity, gas and water, construction, wholesale and retail trade, hotels and restaurants, transport, storage and communication, financial intermediation, etc. As one compares this results to the previous year, the agricultural sector’s number decreased as both the industry and most especially the services sector increased.
After graduation, practically almost all of us want to help out or get a job. Around January till March, seniors from different universities send out resumes, thinking that there might be an opportunity for them in the industrial sector. Doesn’t it occur to some that by doing so (with the awareness of our growing population rate), that we may have over saturating the sector?
While there are over saturated sectors, there are also their counterparts one of which is research and development. Why do I want to include this? First, we need great thinkers but it’s either they’re not staying in our country or they are not known. Partly to blame is our government and the media but then again, maybe it’s because of our culture.
Through our culture, we would react accordingly when hearing the words, research and development. One might say, it does not give good money to the people. Another would mention, it fails to thrive in our homes or universities. Lastly the rest of us would think, why waste time on that if we could get ‘real’ jobs? These are what the Filipinos think of regarding careers toward the mentioned field. There is neither the support nor the effort of the major institutions including the media and the government to promote such areas.
Moving on to my second point and based from the first point, we notice the priorities of the government, the conglomerates and the media. You don’t see advertisement gearing towards such areas aside from attaining stardom and getting into high-paying jobs as so to speak. Jobs referred here are those largely based in the industry and service sectors within the Industrial Sector. Career discernment largely depends on what one sees around his or her environment as well as other contributing factors such as culture.
Because of these two, we see this negative feedback on research most especially in our school grounds. By just looking at our school, many of us don’t give second thoughts on going to graduate schools or developing the research done in the different departments. We thought all the while that by graduating and holding on to the thought that we will be professional for others, we might actually help the country. Entrepreneurship and innovation are few of the major points our university holds. What lacks though is the motivation and encouragement for the people to do more research, or follow one of the university’s objectives on attaining academic excellence. At this point, research is already a school-wide problem. Just imagine if this were an actual nation-wide problem?
With this large issue, how do we go about this? Maybe change should start from within but this seems too general. What about the present leaders in our country? Will they do their part in shaping the country’s image on research and development? They want to solve our development concerns but they cannot solely base it on fighting corruption, focusing on industrialization and mass production, and such. All of us should think ahead and by doing so, look at the long-term benefits our people will be getting if we start promoting the mentioned area. After all, that’s one of the reasons that drives the youth to study don’t you think?
What matters in the end is not just how resilient our country is nor attaining full-employment today. We should not do the easier way out on doing things. Maybe for once, instead of focusing on attaining full employment, can’t we develop the country’s minds for our own good?