TESDA to Hold National TVET, Jobs Fair on February and August

Are you an out-of-school youth (OSY) — or any member of the public — looking for ways to landing a job faster even without a college diploma? There’s a way: technical vocational (tech-voc) education and training (TVET), and the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) has many courses, three-months or so long, that a job hunter can get into.

TESDA, through its thousands of graduates, including college students and college graduates who shifted into tech-voc, has proven its National Certificates (NCs) are passports to employment here and abroad.

You can even have a tech-voc course for free because TESDA has offerings of various scholarship programs available, particularly for OSY, or others deserving and equally deserving target beneficiaries.

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TESDA is mandated to train and produce quality Filipino manpower with world-class competence and trustful characters that will make the Philippines proud.

In the time of Secretary Guiling “Gene” A. Mamondiong, current TESDA director general, this thrust continues with even more urgency. So, if you are into tech-voc, mark this dates: February 27 and 28 and August 25 and 26, 2018.

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Mamondiong, the other day, announced that TESDA will conduct a two-day National TVET and Enrollment with Jobs Fair geared for those who want to take lessons in TVET, including former graduates. It is one of the ways the agency is bringing TESDA closer to the citizens. “People will see us near their homes or places of work. More than ever, we will make it very easy for anyone interested to enroll in a tech-voc course, he assured.

The TESDA chief meant the regional and provincial program will be held simultaneously in various provincial capitals and municipalities across the country. In the cities, the enrollment and jobs fair will be staged in districts.

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To spice and give more relevance to the program, the agency has invited businessmen, employers, and its many industry partners to participate in the jobs fair. The TESDA chief linked the Duterte administration’s “Build, Build, Build” infrastructure program to TESDA’s efforts to help its graduates get employed.

“Another purpose of this activity is to recruit qualified TVET graduates, most specially for construction-related jobs, such as electricians and plumbers, which are in great demand now that the administration’s ‘Build, Build, Build’ infrastructure program is fast gaining momentum,” said Mamondiong.

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He said the nationwide program is available to members of the public who wished to undergo training in tech-voc courses. The objective of the activities include ensuring a steady supply of technicians, technologists, and world-class workers, he added, and TESDA will bring the training to people’s doorsteps.

“We are inviting everyone to avail of this opportunity that we will be bringing almost to your doorsteps. Likewise, this will be a perfect chance for our industry partners to enlist the services of the most qualified tech-voc graduates for their vacant positions,” stressed the TESDA Director General.

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President Rodrigo Roa Duterte appointed Mamondiong to TESDA as director general after the May 2016 national election. The Maranao leader, one of the former Davao City mayor’s key supporters, assumed office two months later.

Mamondiong met with TESDA officials to learn about the agency’s nitty-gritty, what needed to be done to get it even stronger to serve its mandate, to delivers its promise to the Filipinos — of providing quality skills.

He soon introduced a more inclusive scholarship program like never before. With this scholarship thrust qualified residents of even the far-flung barangays (villages) can expect to be included in the allocation under of free TVET courses.

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The new TESDA chief said none of the country’s 42,036 barangays should be left behind in the allocation of TVET scholarships. TESDA replaced the defunct National Manpower and Youth Council (NMYC) in August 1994 by virtue of Republic Act No. 7796. The agency is positioned as “the leading partner in the development of the Filipino workforce with world-class competence and positive work values.”

So, it is no surprise that every head of TESDA, including Mamongdiong, a Muslim of Maranao ethnic affiliation, has been striving to fulfill the agency’s mandate as they pour resources on and implement the scholarship programs.

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The free scholarship initiatives are Private Education Student Financial Assistance (PESFA), Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP), Special Training for Employment Program (STEP), and Bottom-up-Budgeting (BuB).

The new TESDA director general is not shying away from the huge task on his shoulders. With help from fellow agency officials and personnel he carries part of the weight of the load in Duterte’s administration in combating the country’s debilitating poverty incidence.

“I accept and take responsibility in ensuring that TESDA realizes its vision, accomplish and fulfills its commitment,” said Mamondiong. He added that in continuing TESDA’s successful programs, he will also integrate the anti-poverty agenda of the first President from Mindanao. But in doing so, the Moro lawyer is going one step further than what his predecessors at TESDA did. “We will seek out those who have been neglected and have experienced little or no attention from the government, introduce them to skills training, and help them realize their potentials to be productive members of society,” said Mamondiong.

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He said that TESDA already sent letters to the country’s barangay chairmen to seek inputs on what training programs their constituents needed most in their respective communities.

Observers noted that what could be most felt by Filipinos is Mamondiong’s inclusion of every barangay and the respective barangay chairmen in the allocation of scholarships, eliminating, hopefully, in the process the previous practice of relying heavily on TESDA-accredited schools to distribute scholarship vouchers.

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Mamondiong’s strategy of going direct to the barangay heads will also lessen, if not totally eliminate, partisanship in allocating scholarship as political leaders have been known to give preference to their supporters.

In the scheme under TESDA’s new Barangay-Based Scholarship Program, the Moro executive seeks collaboration with the over 42,000 barangays dotting the country in identifying the people’s skills requirements in each barangay, initiating and implementing anti-poverty programs and projects, with emphasis in the poorest regions.

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Also covered is the integration of moral values, peace and order and the effects of drug trafficking in the current modules in support of Duterte’s mantra and avowed advocacy against illegal drugs and corruption.

To do this, TESDA has started the now-ongoing Barangay Skills Mapping Program seeking to strengthen and assure the public that no one will be left out in the skills training program, particularly those in the provinces.

Mamondiong took to heart the President’s Ten-Point Agenda, particularly on investing on human capital development that covers skills matching and training in response to the Philippines’ unemployment and poverty-alleviation thrust. In support of this, the TESDA director general crafted the agency’s Reform and Development Agenda for the next six years and beyond.

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Going forward, aside from the Barangay-Based Scholarship Program, the rest are Online Scholarship Application; Walk-in Scholarship Program; Technical Audit of TVET Schools and Programs; Skills Training for Drug Dependents; Skills Training for Entrepreneurs and Family Enterprises; Skills Training Program for Inmates and their Families;

OFWs’ Integration; Special Skills Program for the Indigenous People; Inclusive Training Program for Women and Persons with Disabilities (PWDs); Continuing Program for TESDA’s Alumni; Global Access to / Online Database of TVET Graduates and Certified Workers; Linkages with Agro-Industry; Linkages with State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) and Local Universities and Colleges (LUCs); Linkages with Foreign Training Institutions; Transparency; and Moral Renewal.

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“We are confident that these programs will help empower our people to become productive members of society. These will give them the opportunity through skills training that can either help them start a career or new business venture,” Mamondiong said.


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EDD K. Usman

Presently, Edd Usman is a freelance journalist contributing as Stringer to Newsbytes.ph, Rappler.com, and Malaya Business Insight. From May 2016 to December 2017, he is a senior correspondent of Newsbytes.ph. He was also a Senior reporter at Manila Bulletin until April 15, 2016.