21 July 2012
Young technical vocational education and training (TVET) graduates take the spotlight in the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) first-ever search for outstanding youth graduates.
The project dubbed “TESDA Best, Batang TESDA 2012” is on the lookout for graduates of any TVET course, who are 30 years-old and below and have attained the skills, excellence and success in their chosen occupation.
The nationwide search started in June this year.
A national winner and two runners-up, who will be selected from the pool of regional nominees, will be known in August during the agency’s 18thanniversary celebration. The winners will receive cash prizes and plaques of recognition.
“It’s time to turn our attention to the young graduates. Their success stories are testaments that there are promising careers from technical vocational education," according to Secretary Joel Villanueva, TESDA Director-General.
Highlighting the achievements of the young specialists will also boost the morale of other TESDA graduates and raise public awareness and acceptance of technical vocational training, Villanueva said.
The nominee should have an outstanding achievement in his/her line of trade either as an employee or an entrepreneur.
Likewise, the candidate will be required to present the TESDA training programs attended, the skills certification, and a narration of the career history as among the criteria for evaluation.
This was the first time TESDA launched an award specifically for its young graduates. In the past years, it has awarded outstanding specialists through the TESDA Idol and the Kabalikat Awards.
Villanueva said that the youth sector, whose age ranges from 15 to 34, demands most attention when it comes to employment initiatives.
Based on the Bureau of Labor and Employment Statistics, he said, the sector has the largest number of unemployed individuals at 2.3 million as of January 2012, representing more than half of the total unemployed population.
However, PHIL-Jobnet, an internet-based job and applicant matching system, said that during the fourth quarter of 2011, there are many job vacancies that specify applicants for the youth.
"From these statistics, it may be inferred that those in this age group either have qualifications that do not match existing job opening or do not have the required training," Villanueva said.
The TESDA chief also noted that TESDA has a higher employment rate of its graduates at 60 percent, compared to the 20 percent hiring rate of college graduates, according to the Department of Labor.
"The old paradigm that tells us to get good grades, go to college is a luxury for the few. There's an alternative in technical vocational training. Our choices should not be limited," Villanueva said.