04 November 2011
Workers in the construction industry will be the target beneficiaries of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) as it steps up its training program to the province of Iloilo.
On Thursday, TEDSA Director General Joel Villanueva signed a memorandum of agreement with the provincial government, represented by Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. to train, assess and certify the province’s semi-skilled construction workers under the TESDA-Iloilo Skills Partnership Project.
Villanueva said the training program will be delivered under the strategic framework of the agency’s Reaching the Grassroots, Empowering the Reached, Assuring Life-long learning and education, Developing, Empowering and Actively Engaging the Labor Force (REAL DEAL) program.
“This memorandum of agreement with the Iloilo province is a recognition that partnership with the local government stakeholders and the private sector is essential in developing the country’s middle-level skilled workers, and we hope this will bring out the best crop among our semi-skilled workers in the province,” he said.
Villanueva said that demand for skilled workers in critical sectors of the local economy and in overseas labor market has been steadily increasing, and TESDA aims to meet this demand with a ready pool of trained and certified workers, including those in the construction sector.
Under the agreement, TESDA will provide technical assistance and resources to the local government through its regional and provincial offices. It will conduct training and post training programs, including the conduct of competency assessment and certification of graduates who will pass the assessment.
Through its Community Training and Employment Coordinators and the Public Employment Service Office (PESO), the Iloilo government will identify and recruit participants to the training program.
It will also provide funds to cover the training costs and other expenses related to the implementation of the training program. It will facilitate the employment of graduates through the PESO.
Villanueva said the training program is timely and relevant amidst the continued growth of the construction industry in the country.
With the multi-billion peso funds infused for infrastructure as part of the government’s stimulus package, the TESDA chief said that this will jack up the demand for competent construction workers in both the private and public sector.
“We need to conduct massive training of workers for practical jobs that the nation actually needs, and upgrading the skills of our construction workers is certainly one of our priorities,” Villanueva said.
“At the same time, we also have to ensure that the quantity of the workers we train matches with quality of workers desired, guaranteeing that we produce world-class workforce. Hence, the need for them to undergo assessment and certification after the training,” he added.
TESDA recently renewed its partnership with Holcim Cement Corp., one of the country’s leading cement manufacturers, for the training of 2,200 masons.
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