World TVET Conference held at Suva,theme was “Quality, Innovation and Skill Mobilization in Technical Vocational Education and Training – an internationalization process”

President Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konrote, says the World TVET Conference will help us to refine our education and vocational training.

A major goal of technical education is to eliminate any form of inequality in education, says the Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts Mahendra Reddy. He highlighted this at the gala dinner during the World  (Technical Vocational Education and Training) TVET Conference in Suva.He said Government’s investment in technical, vocational education and training was also aimed at addressing gender parity in as far as access to education was concerned.

“Inequality between students with different aptitude so that choices are available, Inequality between students in urban areas and rural/maritime region hence, decentralizing the campuses, Inequality among the two genders for technical education”, he said.

“The days where the probability of boys taking up technical education programmes far outweighed the number of girls is gone. We are motivating all girls and boys and men and women to enroll in technical education, and choose career pathways which they desire and not which are forced onto them.”

Mr Reddy said that to cater for children who did not have an aptitude for higher education studies, the Technical College of Fiji was established to offer skill-based level II studies. There are 12 fully operational Technical College campuses Fiji wide.

“After having the pioneer graduation ceremony of the first three campuses earlier in the year, within one month 70 per cent of all those students who graduated were absorbed in the workforce. The qualification offered here are all competency based.

“We also have vocational centres operating in secondary schools in Fiji, offering specific programmes and training areas best suited to the interests and choices of the students from within that area,” Mr Reddy added. He said the networking opportunities provided through the global conference would go a long way in assisting Fiji and the South Pacific countries in strengthening efforts towards quality technical education.

“TVET needs to be expanded but quality must be ensured. Students and Governments are investing their resources and we must ensure it is relevant to the industry as well pegged and delivered at an appropriate level in Qualifications Frame work.”

Speaking in Suva yesterday, at the first conference of its type in the Pacific, Mr Konrote added this would allow a smoother transition for our children from school to employment.

President of the International Vocational Education and Training Association (IVETA), Carmel Thompson, said she was thrilled that Fiji was hosting the conference this year and had applauded the organizers for making the event a reality.

The World TVET Conference is hosted by the Fiji National University (FNU) in partnership with the Pacific TVET Association. More than 200 overseas delegates from 40 different countries are attending the three-day event. The theme for this year’s conference is: “Quality, Innovation and Skill Mobilization in Technical Vocational Education and Training – an internationalization process.”

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