Kosovo’s youth is facing immense challenges in finding jobs and be an active part of the labor force. With a more than 60% young population (Kosovo Statistical Agency), it is certainly the country with the youngest population in Europe. Out of the ones already part of the labor force, 55.9% are unemployed (KSA) – a percentage that is increasing annually, with more and more students graduating and entering the labor force. The University of Prishtina, as an institution of higher education and a major channel of Kosovar youth towards the labor force, has a significant role in preparing them to enter the market. Except of the diploma and knowledge received, students must also possess a set of skills and experiences that make them ready and fully employable in the current labor market. Through an effective and sustainable career guidance system, this university could have a considerable impact to the economy of the country. In order for such a system to be established, one has to understand the crucial role of the Career Development Center (CDC) in this process and the issues that it is facing. CDC, since its inception, has received symbolic support from the University of Prishtina in expanding its range of services and the capacities of the Center itself. The number of 900 students counseled per year is microscopic in comparison with the base number of 50,000 students (and alumni) – only 1.8% of the UP students and alumni receive counseling. Only 2% of the students have participated in the trainings organized by the Center. The current coverage capacities of the Center are too small to have a considerable impact to the student body’s career development and a general improvement of the situation in the university and the success of the alumni. The problem which this project intents to analyze and solve is that only a small percentage of the UP students benefit from the services provided by CDC, and that there are considerable issues in the organizational and management aspect within the center that if solved, would ultimately increase the output of the Center and the quality of its services. The methodological approach in analyzing the Center and similar career centers in Higher Education Providers (HEPs) focused mainly in in-depth analysis of secondary research, qualitative research through interviews with the staff of CDC and input directly from other HEP centers, in addition to the observation of these other centers in comparison to CDC. P a g e 7 | 56 The results showed that the Career Guidance industry as a whole is being unable to fully serve the students of the HEPs they are part of, except of certain universities whose system, curricula and relatively small size of student body positively impact the effectiveness of their Center’s results. Since it is part of the major public HEP, CDC provides services to the largest number of students, and thus is unable to effectively tackle even simple issues such as staffing and access to information. This project analyzes each of the core problems that the center possesses, and uses approaches such as M4P (Making Markets work for the Poor), in order to develop a tailored strategy for reformation. Two of the main aspect in which the Center is recommended to focus its 2015 reformation process is the establishment of a thorough legislative framework and the improvement of the support systems which implement the rules and regulations. This systemic intervention strategy intents to increase the level of exposure of the Center, its access to information within UP, increase quality and frequency of services such as trainings and counseling, and most importantly, increase the number of job vacancies disseminated to students by 300% by the end of 2015.
Elezaj, Blendrit, "Career Development Center Reformation: Enhancing the Employability of UP Students" (2015). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT/A.U.K - formerly American University in Kosovo