KUCHING: The incidence of medical graduates failing to find employment has become common in the nation, said SUPP president Senator Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian.
Dr Sim, who is also senior advisor to the Sarawak General Hospital’s (SGH) Heart Centre, pointed out that unemployment among newly graduated doctors was unheard of five years ago, but it is happening with many of them waiting to be recruited.
“Five years ago, jobs were waiting for these graduates. Now, for the first time, I am hearing that these graduates are waiting for a job,” he said when asked at a news conference on Sarawak Career and Postgraduate Expo 2015 at Citadines Hotel here yesterday.
Dr Sim said he had come across a medical graduate of Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) who was still waiting to be employed six months after graduation.
He said the Ministry of Health (MoH) had set a quota on employing doctors, and at the moment, there was no more vacancies for fresh medical graduates waiting to be employed.
“The government has fixed the quota instead of creating more jobs. Most of the hospitals have enough housemen, and so for the fresh graduates to come in, there has to be vacancies.
“There are already enough housemen and doctors and the government cannot employ more because people will start asking why there are so many doctors who do nothing at the hospitals.”
Dr Sim thus asserted that it was pivotal for school leavers to figure out their interests and the job market demand before they decided to pursue a course.
“Be practical and look into the employable market of the course you are going to study. Be more aware of the market needs. For fresh graduates, job mismatch happens, but it is more important to get a job first so that you can get experience and start taking responsibility. Do not sit at home for months waiting for the right job.”
Citing as examples, he said some fresh law graduates in Melbourne who could not find a job had to secure one in either Singapore or Malaysia.
“It happens to engineering graduates in Melbourne, too. And I’m not talking about Malaysians only as it happens to graduates in other countries, too.”
Meanwhile, organiser of the expo PenExpo Events Sdn Bhd managing director Francis Wong said higher expectations of job seekers led to unemployment among some graduates.
He opined that some job seekers had laid out criteria like salary package benefits and among their demands was to work near their homes.
“Lower your expectations and you will have no problem getting a job.”