Dereja, in Partnership with the Ministry of Labor and Skills, and the Mastercard Foundation to Host National Career Expo for More than 20,000 Recent Graduates

Dereja Career Expo

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, October 10, 2023 – Dereja, in partnership with the Ministry of Labor and Skills (MOLS) and the Mastercard Foundation, will host its National Career Expo on October 18-19, 2023, at Millennium Hall, Addis Ababa, to provide recent graduates with a forum to interface with employers as they network to obtain secure employment positions.

Dereja, a social enterprise unit of leading online recruitment platform Africa Jobs Network, is committed to advancing youth employment in Ethiopia and serves as an offline employment linkage platform that helps students secure jobs before their graduation.

Ethiopia faces a significant youth unemployment rate, and the Career Expo will therefore provide recent graduates with a highly sought-after forum to interface with employers, network, and secure positions.

The Career Expo will unite over 200 organizations from various sectors, including government, private, and multinational companies, with 20,000 students and over 3,100 highly trained Dereja Academy graduates nationwide. Companies will have the opportunity to access an excellent candidate pool, benefit from business-to-business networking, and cost-effectively brand themselves to potential employees. Fresh graduates can find jobs, network with other professionals in their field, and interview for open positions.

Many graduates struggle to find employment due to their lack of knowledge about the job market and the necessary skills. To help solve this challenge, Dereja offers training on employability skills to assist young people in preparing for the workforce. A few weeks in advance of the Career Expo, Dereja also conducts orientation sessions to teach students how to write a Curriculum Vitae and application letter, prepare for job interviews, and conduct job searches. Additionally, students develop a better understanding of their strengths and how to present themselves to potential employers.

Ahead of the Career Expo, Dereja will host a Breakfast Forum on October 10 from 8:00 a.m.- to 11:00 am at the Sheraton Addis Hotel. The forum will provide employers with the opportunity to learn about the Expo format, network with other employers, and discuss their hiring needs.

“For the past five years, we have been working with partners such as the Mastercard Foundation and Dereja to equip young people with the right skills that make them ready for the job market and the platform to connect with recruiters. The Ministry is committed to its continuity to contribute to producing qualified graduates that satisfy the requirements of the labor market,” says Dejene Bekele, Employment Promotion Head for the Ministry of Labor and Skills.

“We are excited to host the Dereja National Career Expo at Millennium Hall,” said Dina Makonnen, Chief Operating Officer of Africa Jobs Network. “This Expo is a critical event for addressing youth unemployment in Ethiopia. We are committed to providing fresh graduates with a platform to showcase their skills and knowledge to potential employers, and we are also committed to helping employers find talented young people to join their teams.”

The Career Expo will feature a variety of activities, including:

  • Employer booths where job seekers can learn about open positions and meet with recruiters.
  • Breakfast forums for employers to highlight the need to invest in young talent.
  • Workshops organized for both employers and job seekers as a side event.
  • A Human Resource conference – to discuss recruitment in the digital age, targeting HR professionals and CEOs who get to learn from seasoned speakers on best practices and current recruitment trends.

Currently, over 160 employers have registered for the Career Expo, and are anticipated to provide over 5,000 job opportunities. Some of the organizations that will be in attendance include Heineken Ethiopia, Dodai Manufacturing plc, JTI Ethiopia, Plan International, Purpose Black Ethiopia, Dashen Bank, and EEIG Construction.

Kabaye Teffera, a Marketing Management graduate from Addis Ababa University School of Commerce, was one of hundreds present during the 2022 Career Expo. “I am grateful to Dereja and the Career Expo for streamlining the recruitment process and helping me achieve my career goals. The Expo provided me with a valuable platform to connect with potential employers and showcase my skills and experience.” She was immediately recruited as the Communications and Marketing officer for Ethiojobs, with the support of Dereja.com.

Prior to the National Career Expo, a series of career expos are organized in different public universities to connect recent graduates with employers. Hanna Girma, a Chemical Engineering graduate, attended a 2023 expo organized at Adama Science and Technology University campus. She says, “The expo was nice! I had applied to a few companies and was called in for interviews immediately. I highly recommend [that] graduates attend the upcoming National Expo. It is a venue to meet with potential employers and learn about different companies and industries.”

For employers, these job fairs serve as an effective platform to quickly recruit talented students who recently graduated while minimizing recruitment costs. They also create an opportunity for organizations to enhance their visibility and brand.

“We are always looking for talented individuals to join our team, and the National Career Expo is a great way to meet potential candidates,” said Hilina Legesse, Head of Corporate Services at Dodai Manufacturing PLC. “We’re excited to participate in the Expo and connect with job seekers who are interested in working for a fast-paced and innovative company.”

“Equipping university students and graduates with the right skills that maximize their employability and linking them with employers is a key component of the Young Africa Works strategy in Ethiopia. This Career Expo is one of the activities of the Foundation’s partnership with Dereja. We believe employers will take advantage of this opportunity to hire young people who just graduated from universities,” said Samuel Yalew Adela, Mastercard Foundation Country Director for Ethiopia.


About the Ministry of Labor and Skills

The F.D.R.E. Ministry of Labor and Skills under its current structure, is an institution established in 2018 under Council of Ministers Registration number 435/2011 and is accountable to the Prime Minister of the F.D.R.E. The Ministry is responsible for administering, collaborating, and overseeing job creation agendas throughout all sectors. To ensure the creation of sustainable jobs, the Ministry plans on facilitating and assisting the creation of millions of jobs by 2030.

For more information, please visit: www.jobscommission.gov.et

About the Mastercard Foundation:

The Mastercard Foundation is a registered Canadian charity and one of the largest foundations in the world. It works with visionary organizations to advance education and financial inclusion to enable young people in Africa and Indigenous youth in Canada to access dignified and fulfilling work. Established in 2006 through the generosity of Mastercard when it became a public company, the Foundation is an independent organization separate from the company, with offices in Toronto, Kigali, Accra, Nairobi, Kampala, Lagos, Dakar, and Addis Ababa. Its policies, operations, and program decisions are determined by the Foundation’s Board of Directors and leadership.


About Dereja.com:

Established in 2015, Dereja seeks to address Ethiopia’s youth unemployment issue. New graduates often face a job market that is hostile toward their lack of experience. Our mission is to provide guidance and career resources for university students and young professionals to rectify this pressing concern. Dereja’s multi-faceted youth development platform, Dereja.com, has thus created a hub well-suited for the youth. The platform provides students with access to employment-related information and resources. Additionally, the various youth development initiatives of Dereja, from availing job opportunities by employers to job readiness and employability skills training, to career expos that help graduates connect with potential employers, provide new graduates with the right tools and resources to ensure success and help them transition into the workforce. We collaborate with like-minded partners to achieve this and continuously look to bring various stakeholders to rally around this very important socio-economic issue.

For more information, please visit our official website: https://www.dereja.com/


Ministry of Labor and Skills

Abebe Alemu:  Media Communication and PR


Tel: 0911977467


Infomind Solutions (Dereja):

Bethelhem Jambo, Employers Engagement and Linkage Manager

Email: bethelhemjambo@dereja.com

Tel: +251907525350


Mastercard Foundation

Simret Yasabu, Lead, Program Communications

Telephone: +251 988 80 57 66

Email: syasabu@mastercardfdn.org


Learn more about our work in Ethiopia



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