September 24, 2019

TAGUIG CITY, Philippines – The TESDA Women’s Center (TWC) has been selected as one of the three (3) pilot institutions of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization – International Centre for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (UNESCO-UNEVOC) International Centre Skills for Innovation Hubs (i-hubs) project in the Asia-Pacific, landing among the total ten (10) pilot i-hubs centres around the world.

Following the launch of the i-hubs project on March 28-29 in Bonn, Germany, the TWC was recognized for its proven experience and commitment to innovation especially in the sectors of entrepreneurship, digitalization, and greening.

As i-Hub pilot centre, TWC will create its Innovation Action Plan during the Innovation Hubs Guided Self-Assessment (GSA) workshop on September 23-27.

The GSA will be guided by representatives from the UNESCO-UNEVOC and will have Omnia – The Joint Authority of the Espoo Region in Finland, as Peer Reviewers.

According to UNESCO-UNEVOC, the i-hubs project is an exercise in co-development to “maximize the innovation potential of TVET institutions as drivers of employability, economic growth and inclusive social development.”

TESDA Secretary Isidro Lapeña earlier reiterated the role of GSA in further enhancing the learning and professional development of scholars in support to TESDA’s mandate to provide up-to-date skills training to enable more Filipinos to uplift their quality of life.

“I strongly believe that by applying the i-hubs innovation framework of UNESCO-UNEVOC, TESDA can further address the emerging issues and competency requirements in both domestic and global labor markets and industries in this age of Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). By transforming the TESDA Women’s Center into a TVET Innovation Hub, I am confident that it will produce a greater number of skilled professionals who are more productive, empowered and innovative,” Lapeña said.

The overall goal of the i-hubs project is to develop an enabling framework for transforming TVET institutions to become “drivers of innovation, social inclusion and entrepreneurial culture” through the collective experiences and lessons drawn from the 10 pilot i-hubs institutions identified by UNESCO-UNEVOC.

“I am also optimistic that after TWC shares the results of the Guided Self-Assessment, other TVET institutions will be able to adapt and build their own capacity for innovation,” Lapeña added.

The TWC serves as the leading TVET institution in the Philippines in pursuit of excellence in empowering Filipino women through gender mainstreaming.

As such the center ensures their scholars’ employability and further professional development through Job Orientation Programs (JOP), embedded with the Skills to Succeed Program in partnership with Accenture, a multinational professional services company.

The center also conducts a Semi-Annual Jobs Fair and Stakeholder's Forum to engage the industries in enhancing TWC's curriculum and training/learning methodologies and activities.

The previous year saw the launching of “Wooden Spoon,” the TESDA-PILMICO Innovation Center for Bread and Pastry Production (BPP) and Barista.

At present, the TWC plans to set up additional Innovative Training Laboratories in the following qualifications: Alteration Shop for Dressmaking NCII; Service Shops for Automotive NCII and Motorcycle/Small Engine NCII; Restaurant facilities for Cookery NCII; Improved Dormitory rooms comparable to various hotel rooms for Housekeeping NCII; and High-end Bar with separate Flairtending Gym for Bartending NCII in partnership with Ginebra San Miguel, Inc. (GSMI) and San Miguel Foundation (SMF).

In addition to UNESCO-UNEVOC and Omnia, the TWC also welcomes the TWC Center Advisory Council, including external partners such as the Asia Pacific Accreditation and Certification Commission (APACC), Department of Trade and Industry, Philippine Commission on Women (PCW), Philippine Coffee Board, Inc., the Aboitiz Foundation and Pilmico Foods Corporation to participate in the High Level Seminar which is part of the GSA Program.

The other i-hubs Pilot Institutions are as follows: Rift Valley Technical Training Institute (RVTTI) in Kenya (Eastern Africa), Seychelles Institute of Technology (SIT) in Seychelles (Eastern Africa), Yaba College of Technology in Nigeria (West Africa), Shenzhen Polytechnic in China (East and Southeast Asia), University of Vocational Technology (UNIVOTEC) in Sri Lanka (Southern Asia), Omnia - The Joint Authority of Education in the Espoo Region in Finland (Europe), Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST) in Malta (Europe), Tknika - the Institute for the Innovation of the Vocational and Educational Training System in Spain (Europe), and BKAL - Berufskolleg an der Lindenstraße in Germany (Europe).