Ministry of Education, Guyana

Sunday, 10 December 2017 09:33

111 youths successfully graduate from BIT Programme

news 20171210 2After months of dedication and schooling, 111 youths have successfully passed the National Training Programme for Youth Empowerment (NTPYE) which was facilitated by the Board of Industrial Training (BIT) in collaboration with the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) centre in Port Mourant.

At the recently held graduation, the youths were congratulated for their effort and commitment to the programme while being charged to make the best of their acquired knowledge and skills.
During his remarks at the ceremony, BIT Chairman, Clinton Williams recognized the sterling contribution made by GuySuCo over the years in partnering with BIT as a “Master” in the delivery of the now “internationally renowned apprenticeship programme”.
Williams said, “We are indeed grateful also for their continued support in the delivery of this unique National Training Programme for Youth Empowerment, also having readily agreed to commit to this partnership way back in 2013.”
The Chairman noted that Guyana’s development programme will continue to be largely influenced by the availability and competency of its technical occupational skilled workforce. Notwithstanding this, he said that Guyana like many other developing countries has been experiencing a widening gap between workplace needs and workplace skill availability.
Williams noted that this mismatch continues to be largely influenced by the historical stigma attached to Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), in that the area is viewed as the last resort for academically weak students, hence the prevalence of low standards displayed by skills generated.
Williams said that unfortunately, recent Labour Market Intelligence Surveys have reconfirmed significant skill shortages in the Traditional Sectors, which have been further compounded as a result of the undesirable increasing phenomenon of “skill poaching” between sectors, in addition to migration.
Against this background, Williams pointed out that new sectors have emerged and are emerging such as Oil and Gas and Hydropower Development along with spin-off industries from Guyana’s Low Carbon Development.
In addition to this, the Chairman said that the numerous Trade-in-Services opportunities emanating from existing Bilateral Partial Scope and Multilateral Partnership Agreements would significantly increase future needs for TECHVOC Skills. He stressed that these new sectors will therefore add to what he often refers to as a “Dire National Skill Deficiency Syndrome”.
Williams said, “This increasingly unmet demand is disappointing, more so devastating, particularly for those young people leaving the formal school system as ‘drop outs’ or as ‘disadvantaged youths’ without being provided with an opportunity to also contribute to the National Development Drive via the reduction of poverty alleviation and crime prevention through pertinent interventions that would address their peculiar deficiencies and thus provide the basis for a good life in accordance with the Current Administration’s Mantra.”
The Chairman continued, “The National Training Programme for Youth Empowerment has been conceived to address this particular dilemma. The goal of the Project is to contribute to the National demand for Occupational Skills by the Training and Development of Youths, particularly disadvantaged youths, to become self-employed or to access gainful employment within the Private and/or Public Sector.”
He added, “This project which began in 2006 is administered by the Board of Industrial Training through the delivery of a modular competency-based National Occupational Skill Development System in Guyana. It incorporates the establishment and implementation of appropriate skill development policies and practices.”
Williams said that these include the formulation of a dynamic leadership and motivational plan; programmes for occupational life skills and entrepreneurial training activities aimed at promoting job creation, improved productivity, with the ultimate goal of enhanced global competitiveness.
The Chairman explained that the average duration of these training exposures is between 350 contact hours or three months to one year. He explained that each Trainee is provided with an allowance to cover transportation and incidentals in addition to safety gear, basic tools and reading materials.
He said, “We however depend on Private Sector to a large extent to provide the facilities and facilitators to effect the training programmes under the supervision of our own instructors.”
Performance to Date
From the year 2000 to date, the Board of Industrial Training has collaborated in the delivery and certification of approximately 22,000 Occupational Skills across Guyana for which the NTPYE Programmes which was initiated in 2006, amounted to approximately 12,822 Craftsmen. This clearly demonstrates that this is indeed BIT’s signature programme.
Furthermore, a review of BIT’s Work Programme reveals that in 2017 BIT has made several accomplishments. In this regard, Williams stated that the institution has graduated 1,463 persons in the fields of Building, Engineering, Forestry, Home Economics and Information Technology.
It has also trained 43 prospective employees of the Paramakatoi Sundried Tomato Project in the area of Agro-Food Processing and 186 persons with disabilities.
As it relates to Region Six, Williams noted that 2,127 skill sets distributed equally between the genders were generated for this Region from 2013 to present. Of these skills generated, the GuySuCo Training Centre has been a key contributor, generating 750 skill sets to date. Williams said that these occupational skill areas include air conditioning and refrigeration, electrical installation, fitting and machining, welding and fabrication, motor vehicle servicing and repairs and supervisory management.
The BIT Chairman also acknowledged the contributions of other service providers from within this Region who have also partnered with the Board in the generation of the TECHVOC skills. They include: R K Computer Institute, Taste of Heaven, Roadside Baptist Skills Training Centre, Corle’s Engineering Consultancy, Orealla Village Council, Siparuta Village Council, Icua Village Council, Henry’s Workshop, Winkle Road Workshop and the New Amsterdam Technical Institute.
He also thanked institutions such as the Guyana Power and Light, National Insurance Scheme, Ministry of Education and the Guyana Fire Service for their role in providing employment for the trainees in the Region.
With the aforementioned in mind, Williams said he is assured that the graduates will add to the development of Guyana and in the end, make everyone proud.


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