Monday, May 13, 2019

The Importance of Financing Lifelong Learning to Enhance Human Capital

Lifelong learning previous known as Adult Education is important for additional training on economic growth and income distribution that should receive priority as previously acquired knowledge may no longer be applicable in the modern age. Financing of lifelong learning will bring great benefits of increasing the citizen's accumulation of human capital; in view of economic growth increasing knowledge ability is essential for any country that cannot be competitive without applying knowledge. Education is central to strengthening the human capital base which supports the pillars related to skills building and innovation systems.

The difficulties we are facing in Namibia is to meet the challenges of the knowledge society the insufficient funding of higher education, insufficient educational strategies for marginalized groups, lack of schools in remote areas, and a gap in the relationship between educational institutions and communities. A comprehensive program of lifelong learning education for economies should include all levels: early childhood development, primary, secondary, tertiary, and adult continuing education within the overall development of the country. There is also a need for cost sharing between the government, individuals, families, and employers, to create a fair, affordable, and sustainable financing to Lifelong Learning.

The source of funding for Lifelong learning will come from employers who are benefiting from employees who graduated and received knowledge from educational institutions. Therefore employers will only cover the cost of education and training if the staff member requires particular skills for certain jobs. Private entities like Non-Governmental Organisation (NGOs) provide grants and are directed to students which are in direct need of financial assistance, this is usually limited and they will never be in a position to provide funding for everyone especially with the increasing demand for higher education.

The responsibility of the students financing their own education is very prominent in Namibia meaning the student is having the knowledge to themselves and have the financial stability to pay for best educational institutions they can afford. The private sector in most cases lack funds for education making it a pre-requisite for the government to help out Namibian Students Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) these loans in most cases needed to be payback in order for the fund to be sustainable, the majority of the grant holders are in the teaching, nursing, and medical fields. However, current budgetary constraints do not allow the government to meet the increased demands for higher and continuing education.

Financing lifelong long learning should be aimed at making education accessible to all meaning inclusive education. To have a proper financing system in place tremendous benefits can be achieved, this will contribute by creating a better-equipped workforce, by encouraging people to view lifelong learning as a skills enhancement model, with greater control over their personal development and to further increase levels of participation and achievement in communities particularly from marginalized groups, women inequalities and younger workers with low skills. This will enhance the development of wider choice and innovation in the delivery of training.

Policies should be in place in order to recognize that lifelong learning contributes for inclusive growth those affected by unemployment, restructuring and career changes, as well as making an important contribution to social inclusion, active citizenship, and personal development. Participation in learning is crucial as it has a positive impact on wider social benefits such as healthier living, reduced community tension and increased feelings of well-being. Investment in lifelong learning infrastructure has the additional benefit of stimulating sustainable growth.

The Directorate of Adult Education at the Ministry should incorporation with public financing agencies solicit for more donors and encourage them to allocate adequate funds so that operations on programs can run smoothly and by so doing enhancing enrolment. It is necessary for the government to allocate more funds in order to conduct lifelong learning campaigns through advertisements in the media as to sensitize members of the public on the crucial role of lifelong learning to individuals and national development. Lifelong Learning financing agencies should provide funds directly to institutions rather than materials in order to ensure that individual needs and interests are looked after.

Finally, Lifelong learning including all sorts of training and re-training do have a vital role to play when it comes to employability and active citizenship. Strong working relations should be encouraged between schools, universities, private and Vocational Education institution. This is of importance that more investments are needed in people their education, employers, and learners themselves. Innovative mechanisms when it comes to student funding should be properly analyzed and evaluated.

This is important that adequate funding should be provided for lifelong learning in order to have a positive impact, wider social benefits such as healthier living, reduced community tension and increased feelings of well-being. All stakeholders within education should share the burden of education in order to create a create a fair, affordable, and sustainable financing to Lifelong Learning.
My name is Jason and I am a US History Teacher and Model UN Faculty Advisor at my school. After attending the National High School Model United Nations for over 6 years I am really thinking about considering other options. NHSMUN 2018 was a completely different story compared to the previous editions: the numbers were reduced in half the GA was half empty and the logistics was terrible. My students and I had to wait over two hours to get inside the UN and were lining up since 6:30 AM! I understand that there are security regulations that must be met when entering the UN HQ, but it could have been managed in a better way.

At the end, we spent more time waiting outside than inside the GA Hall. Furthermore, they claim to be the "world's largest Model UN Conference, with hundreds of schools and thousands of delegates attending from around the world", when clearly the conference that was taking place at the same time on Saturday had twice the amount of delegates, and had the committee the UN for the full day instead of 30 minutes, the time my students and I spent. When it comes to internationality the conference had basically all Americans with a few Italians that couldn't even speak English and were slowing down the work in the committees.

Now let's talk about the fees. Although I do understand that there are tremendous costs behind these type of conferences, by doing a small research you will find out that there are conferences out here that either charge a very small fee like 30 USD such as GCMUN, or offer over 1500 scholarships including housing financial aid like FWWMUN.

Without mentioning the absurd and disproportionate accommodation rates offered by IMUNA (379 USD plus taxes when the same room is available on at 250 USD taxes included) and the non-sense penalty fee in case you choose to stay in a different hotel, without allowing the participants to choose a cheaper option. IMUNA pretends to be a not-for-profit organization, but appears evident the dear Max and Hannah Ross are becoming Millionaires on our shoulders. One fascinating thing about Kleptocracies is how people sit and accept their suffering from the autocrats who rule them. Throughout history from empires of long ago to modern so called democracies the masses have sat and watched as the elite plunder while they starve. Which begs the question why should the brunt of the population tolerate such injustices? One contributing factor is fear plays a big role in subjecting the proletariat. Opposition under autocracies are quenched in the most gruesome of manners, the use of death squads is a common tactic used by authoritarian regimes to subjugate the proletariat. It is no wonder the masses think twice before even mumbling about their injustices. Another contributing factor that dwarfs fear is the reluctance by the masses to step up; it is a fact that there are very few leaders amongst a people. In most cases the spark for a revolution is a defiant leader. Throughout history revolutions of unimaginable proportions have been started by individuals. Who can forget the impact that Fidel Castro had on the Cuban revolution, Nelson Mandela in the fight against apartheid and more reluctantly Mohammed Bouazizi who started the Arab spring.

The masses expect an individual to be the spark that starts a ginormous all-consuming fire; this creates a laxity in the minds of many as they await their 'Moses' to deliver them to liberty. Leaders are a rare breed in a normal society and the fact that autocrats as proven are in most cases brilliant leaders corrupted by power, autocrats are brilliant at spotting potential leaders. Autocrats play their cards by identifying then manipulating potential threats to their thrones this is to avoid future liabilities in the form of a revolution. Wealth is a tool that is used to deceive potential opposition who in most cases are young aspirants. Autocrats have mastered another trick involves playing the proletariat against the proletariat, Karl Marx in the 'Communist Manifesto' states how the proletariat is easily deceived by a promise of joining the elite ranks. Revolutions in history are commonly characterized by a 'Third Force'. This usually involves the use of individuals who are part of the oppressed party but deceived in most cases by wealth. The best example was in the anti-apartheid revolution where members of the Inkatha party were pitted against their African brothers. Man has implemented the use of the third force from conflicts of ancient times, the use of mercenaries who in most cases are poor and oppressed is no new thing but rather has been in existence from the Neolithic period.

One thing about humans is our absolute ignorance in most political scenarios, how many revolutions do we need to learn? Can it be stated that autocrats as time goes by are getting craftier? In my studies of dictators ranging from the likes of Adolf Hitler of Germany, Joseph Stalin, Pol Pot of Cambodia to the Mobutu's of Africa a stunning similarity arose throughout their reign. I noted that the opposition leaders who stepped up in most scenarios did it for selfish reasons. Take the German general Ludwig Beck who opposed Hitler the mass murderer responsible for the Holocaust, the sole reason the General opposed was differences with the Fuhrer on the military expansion campaign (Reynolds, 1976). Imagine if you were in Germany in 1944 and you were against the Nazi ideology and you heard that Ludwig had defected would you join his ranks? I wouldn't join him for sure, such a cause would be to fight for Ludwig rather than against the disastrous ideology. This is the dilemma the proletariat faces in many Kleptocracies, opposition that is based on a wrong cause therefore creating a suspicion that once they are propagated to power they will themselves turn to the beast that is an autocrat.

I have always wondered how the oppressed can take the suffering created by a government that is meant to be for the people and by the people. Suffering in this case manifests itself as economic collapse, extortionist by the state and worst of all death in the form of political assassination. Suffering in itself should be a catalyst that orients people towards toppling an authoritarian regime without even the guidance of any leader. Ignorance on the part of the proletariat makes him turn a blind eye on the power that he holds. This power is best brought out in the concept of ' People's War' by Mao Zedong which has been adopted in many military strategies such as Vietcong and the ANC Struggles. (Tse-tung, 937). The people command absolute power but the autocrat is no mere mortal but rather he is an expert at limiting this power by effectively using divide and rule tactics such as division based on tribe or party politics to limit the power of the proletariat. I will conclude with a poem. Device and drug testing commences with laboratory research that can encompass years of experiments on animals and on human cells. If the primary laboratory research turns out to be successful, then the researchers send the information to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for consent for the continuation of the research and testing on humans.

Once the drug and device has been approved, human testing of the experimental drug and the devices can commence and typically takes place in four different stages. Every phase is considered as separate trials and after the completion of the specific phases, the investigators have to turn in their data from FDA prior to continuing to the next phase.

Procedure of human clinical trails

Phase I studies

The phase 1 studies evaluate the safety of the drug or the device. This primary phase of testing can take up to multiple months to finish, normally encompasses a small number of healthy volunteers mainly from 20 to 100 people. The people are paid for participating in the phase. The whole study is designed to determine the impact of the device or the drug on humans including how it is taken in, metabolised and then excreted. This phase of study also investigates side effects, if any, which might occur when the number of doses is increased. More than 65% of the experimental drugs have to undergo this phase of testing.

Phase II studies

The second phase of study tests the efficacy of the device or the drug. This second phase of study can last up to several months or up to two years and includes multiple patients. Most of the second phase of studies are unsystematic trials where a group of patients is divided into two, first group of the patients get the experimental drug while the second half of the whole group gets a standard treatment or a placebo. Often this phase is blinded which signifies that neither the researcher nor the patient is aware of which group received the experimental drug. This permits the investigators to offer pharmaceutical company and the FDA comparative details about the relative safety and effectiveness of the fairly new drug. One third of the experimental drugs successfully finish both the initial phases of the studies.

Phase III studies

This phase of study includes unsystematic as well as blind testing in multiple hundreds to thousands of patients. This broad scale testing that can last upto multiple years offer the FDA and the pharmaceutical company a detailed comprehension of the effectiveness of the drug or the device, the perks and the range possible adverse reaction of the drug or device. More than 70 to 90% of the drugs that make it to this phase are able to complete the requirement of the testing of this phase. Once the third phase has been completed, the pharmaceutical company can make a request to the FDA to approve the marketing of the drug or device.

Phase IV studies

The study of the fourth stage is known as the post-marketing surveillance trails that are conducted after the device or the drug has been approved for sale to the consumers. The pharmaceutical companies have multiple objectives at this stage, such as:

    Compare the new drug with the drugs that already exist in the market.
    Monitor the long term effectiveness of the drug as well as its impact on the life of the patient.
    Determine the cost effectiveness of the drug therapy with the traditional as well as new therapies.

The fourth phase of studies can result in the device or the drug being taken off from the market or restrictions being placed on its use depending upon the outcome that it can produce in the market.

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