Two Minutes With…Ayesha Ghafoor

Name? Ayesha Ghafoor Age? 21 Where are you from? Berkshire What do you do? University student Any special hobbies/talents/interests? I’m a first dan black belt in Goju-Kai Karate As a young person what is the worst and the best thing about living where you live? The worst thing was that my friends all lived very far away from me. The best thing is that the train links are very good. If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would it be and why? Somewhere in South America, in the sunshine, to escape the impending examination period. If you had to swap bodies with any historical/political figure, living or dead, who would it be and why? I’d swap with George W Bush (only for 20 mins though) so I could find out what he thinks – if at all. Is it a coincidence that he predicted that the ‘Axis of evil’ are Iran, Syria and North Korea? And now all three countries are going through periods of huge change. If I had to swap with someone for a little longer it would be Nelson Mandela. If you had to invite 3 people, living or dead, to a dinner party, who would they be? Jon Snow, Will Smith and David Attenborough. What is your favourite form of art? Do you find art to be relevant to society today? I think all forms of art have their own appeal. My favourite form of art is always changing, but right now it is photography. Photographers definitely have the power to be relevant to society – they can capture moments forever and illustrate...

Youth Unemployment: The Ugly Truth

It was shocking to discover this year’s youth unemployment statistics, it has been claimed that “around one in six young persons are without a job and not in education”. The question that I now ask myself is, what are those who are without a job or not in education doing? The growing concern for me is that if you are undertaking neither then you are susceptible to growing dependent on the state and public funding such as benefits, or just becoming demotivated and unwilling to make a life for yourself. The article serves as statistical evidence to what is seen as common knowledge – not only to myself but also to many other young adults across the nation – youth employment has gradually deteriorated. What once was considered just a concern for graduates has now affected all young people. It is now a major concern for all those seeking employment, regardless of whether it is a graduate job or just part time work. This article notes that this is “a grim picture for school leavers and graduates across large parts of the world…” and it most certainly is. The assumption for many school leavers and graduates is that there is no real guarantee of securing a job after studying. In addition, this would make many question the capability of the education system to equip those who have studied expecting to achieve a better life for themselves. There is also a growing distaste of the labour market, whereby non-specialist jobs or ‘primitive’ roles are filled with over-qualified people. This means the former requirements for a workplace similar to McDonald’s no...