Young people who are about to enter the most challenging and life-changing phase of their academic life – tertiary education – and those who have just graduated from the university are often bombarded with so many questions: What would your major be? What will your career be after graduation? Does your choice of degree programme in line with your interests and passion?
More often than not, these questions do not have easy and consistent answers.
In order to highlight this seemingly unnoticed dilemma among the youth, the Sour Mouy is created. It is an online mentoring and advisory platform for students and young graduates. The online platform’s creator, Ou Ritthy, aims to assist the youth in getting professional and thoughtful pieces of advice and tips as they make decisions for their future.
Mr Ritthy, who completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science in India and obtained his Master of Science in Public Policy and Human Development degree in the Netherlands, came up with the idea of establishing the platform for people having a hard time choosing their majors, career, scholarship, technical and vocational trainings and entrepreneurial endeavours.
“We just launched our website last week. We now have 98 user registrations, 34 mentees and 64 mentors. I have travelled to provinces to talk with students and youth especially the active youth of Transparency International Cambodia (TIC), which is Sour Mouy’s sponsor in provinces for the platform usage,” said Mr Ritthy, who come from Pursat province.
The platform’s mentors and advisors are graduates of at least a Bachelor’s Degree and those who obtained successful experiences in their careers, business startups or entrepreneurships, trainings and local and international scholarships, Mr Ritthy added.
Mr Ritthy continued that mentors display their profiles and mentoring schedules in the platform so students and mentees can easily identify who to get help from in their academic and career concerns.
“In the form, mentors indicate their educational background, areas of expertise, mentoring category, available times for mentoring, and means to contact them so students won’t have a hard time connecting with them,” Mr Ritthy said.
More than 65 percent of the population is under age 30, and 21 percent is between the age of 15 and 24. With these figures, it is evident that Cambodia has a youthful labour force. But this labour force is also relatively low in education as about half of them finished only primary education according to the report released in 2015 by the Asian Development Bank.
In addition, Cambodia has at least 160 higher education institutions; and based on the survey, most of the Cambodian students are more interested in enrolling in general majors like business management or accounting, marketing, banking and finance, as they believe those majors provide better opportunities for their professional careers.
For more information, visit www.sourmouy.com.