Phnom Penh – In order to address the skill shortage in IT, electronics and automotive technology, Singapore and Cambodia signed an agreement to boost cooperation in the fields of vocational education.
President Tony Tan Keng Yam and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen witnessed the signing of the memoranda of understanding on the second day of Dr Tan’s state visit to Cambodia.
One agreement, between the Cambodian Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (MLVT) and Singapore’s ITE Education Services (ITEES), will help master trainers in Cambodia hone their skills in three areas: info communication technology, electronics, and automotive technology.
These areas were identified as key priorities “based on the current skilled manpower needs and vocational landscape in Cambodia”, said Mr Tan Seng Hua, the chief executive officer of ITEES, an arm of the Institute of Technical Education that provides consultancy in vocational training and education.
The “training of trainers” programme will involve 80 Cambodian master trainers, who will receive a week of lessons in Phnom Penh, and two weeks in Singapore. The lessons will be conducted by experienced lecturers from the Institute of Technical Education who are technical experts in the fields involved.
Mr Tan said that in Cambodia, most of the teachers were recruited immediately after completing their university education. “So in terms of their industry knowledge, in terms of their industry work experience and the latest technology, they need a little help,” he said. “If you really want to give them that exposure to the latest technology, you need the environment and facilities. That’s why they come to Singapore, so they can see for themselves how this technology is being taught to the students themselves.”
The total costs add up to about $805,320. Temasek Foundation International has provided a one-time training grant of up to $453,490 and Cambodia’s MLVT will fund the rest.
There are 1,466 teachers under the Ministry, and the master trainers who go through the programme will, for a start, share what they learned with 240 of their fellow teachers.
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