Aug 27, 2017 News
Even though their studies have come to an end, the journey to new and exciting careers has just begun for 158 students who graduated on Thursday last from the National Training Programme for Youth Empowerment
(NTYPE) of the Board of Industrial Training (BIT).
BIT Chairman Clinton Williams said that he could not have been more proud of the students who were able to benefit from the programme and are now in a better position to improve their livelihood.
Williams noted that the graduation, which is a commendable accomplishment, is a representation of some of the works being carried out by BIT.
Expounding in this regard, the Chairman reminded that the Board of Industrial Training has been partnering with a number of Public and Private Sector Companies in the conduct of the renowned traditional Apprenticeship Vocational Programmes since its existence for over 108 years.
He said that BIT is currently collaborating with the following Masters/Service Providers – Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo), Guyana Power and Light (GPL), BOSAI, BARAMA, and GNIC – in the training of some 266 apprentices whose three-year graduation programme will be completed within the next two years.
In addition to this, the GuySuCo Training Centre at Port Mourant recently completed its 56th Apprenticeship Programme in which 56 Apprentices successfully completed a variety of engineering skills programmes.
As it relates to the National Training Programme for Youth Empowerment, Williams reminded that this was launched in 2006 with the objective of providing competency-based Technical and Vocational Education and Training, to fill the dire shortage of entry level technical skills for both the Private and Public Sector. He said that the current administration has not only embraced, but expanded the programme. In a sense, the programme has always enjoyed bipartisan support.
Furthermore, Williams said that the NTYPE programmes are being delivered in all of the Regions of Guyana.
Williams said, “Our programmes are designed to target vulnerable groups such as school dropouts and youths from depressed communities. Starting with a total of approximately 570 graduates in 2005, the programme has grown tremendously over the years to the extent that by the end of 2017, over 20,000 persons in numerous skill sets, namely Engineering and Building Trades, Information and Communication Technology (ICT), Forestry, Home Economics, Health Services, etc., drawn from all the Regions of Guyana, would have been trained.”
The BIT Chairman added that the entity has also expanded its relationship with service providers to include all five Technical Institutes; the two Industrial Training Centres being the Guyana Industrial Training Centre and the Upper Corentyne Industrial Training Centre; GuySuCo Training Centre – Port Mourant; Forestry Training Centre; Kuru Kuru Training Centre; Other recognized Non-Governmental Organizations and Privately Owned Workshops; Garment Construction; and Catering and ICT Service Providers.
Williams said that these entities will help to significantly expand the range and scope of skills produced. Furthermore, Williams said that during this year, BIT has included the previously under-utilized Practical Instruction Centres (PIC) at Buxton in Region Four. He said that BIT has been collaborating with other stakeholders as well, to provide vocational training to differently-abled persons across a wide spectrum in 2016, and has extended such collaborations during 2017.
Williams said that thus far, during 2017, 95 persons have graduated under this collaboration, of which, 79 started their training in 2016. These Training Programmes were completed in the following disciplines; Computer Repairs, Cosmetology, and Computer Skills Training.
Additionally, 31 persons from the Orealla/Siparuta Villages in the Corentyne River were trained in Outboard and Small Engine Repairs, which is a vital vocation for the sustenance and empowerment for the residents of these communities.
During this year, Williams said, emphasis will continue to be placed on vulnerable groups such as school dropouts, youths from depressed communities, single parents and the differently-able.
Notwithstanding this, he said that BIT intends to foster closer collaboration with the Central Recruitment and Manpower Agency (CRMA) and the Council for Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in order to obtain credible labour market data and information by use of labour market intelligence statistics. He said that this would be done so as to determine realistic demand and by extension, offer continuous career guidance to all potential trainees.
The BIT Chairman said that this process would also allow the agency to structure programmes which will have maximum impact on the unemployed and/or under employed and therefore positively impact on government’s empowerment objective.
He noted too that plans are in the pipeline to improve BIT’s collaboration and better coordination among the formal and non-formal training institutions in order to reduce the high level of duplication in the delivery of many occupational skills training programmes, while at the same time, increase the focus on employment generation.
“With this in mind, I must say that I am pleased to reveal that since the introduction of our Heavy Equipment Operator Training Programme in 2010, we have been recording 100% employment of all the 567 graduates (for which 23 were trained this year for Region Eight in Mahdia) from these our signature programmes across the country, from 2014 to date.
“We shall strive to come up with innovative mechanisms to influence more involvement and support from the local private sector in providing more in-plant facilities and facilitators as well as hands-on approaches on determination of course content and curricula for our respective training programmes. This intervention is absolutely necessary if we are to generate skills sets that are consistently technologically relevant, and hence, adequately meet the expectations of the constantly changing workforce.
As regards quality and reliability, Williams said that BIT will establish a closer collaboration with the TVET Council towards the progressive implementation of competenc- based and entrepreneurial skills training with the ultimate goal of ensuring that all graduates are certified with the recognized National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) and ultimately with the Regional Caricom Vocational Qualification (CVQ).
With regards to chartering the way forward, Williams said that BIT intends to ensure that there is continuous improvement of its Technical Vocational Programmes by reviewing and prioritizing the several core elements.
These include alignment with Guyana’s Development Strategy; improvement in Governance arrangements; the placement of more emphasis on employer engagements; increased funding and incentives systems; reconfiguration of curriculum design and delivery systems and reviewing and improving assessment mechanisms in order to ensure quality assurance and accreditation.
They also include ensuring marketable certification and/or further progression not excluding the achievement of local National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) and/or ultimately Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ).
Williams said that this exercise will ensure the skills generated are sought after not only locally, but regionally and internationally.The BIT Chairman noted that the ultimate goals of these programmes are not only geared towards positively impacting on increased employment generation, entrepreneurship and empowerment, but also by extension, should be viewed as vital socioeconomic interventions as it relates to poverty alleviation and crime prevention.
As a consequence, Williams said that BIT believes that it is sufficiently poised to make a tangible contribution to the current administration’s programmes and policies which are aimed at providing a good life for all the people of Guyana.
Williams also recognized the tremendous support and guidance BIT has received from Ministers Amna Ali and Keith Scott, which he said can best be described as “meaningful consultation and maximum participation in the conceptualization and delivery of BIT’s training programmes”.
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