By Alexander Villafania
QUEZON CITY, METRO MANILA – Technical-vocational courses may not sound as prestigious as a four-year course, but graduates from these courses are most in-demand abroad, according to the Department of Labor and Employment (DoLE)
This is why the government needs to look into technical-vocational (or tech-voc) courses and developing these further, according to DoLE Undersecretary Danilo Cruz.
During an interview with Radyo ng Bayan, Cruz said there are a number of tech-voc courses and even some “dead” college courses that are showing some promise in terms of global workforce demand.
Among the much-needed technical skills is welding while for college courses, he singled out geodetic engineering and mining. Graduates from these courses tend to be hired immediately abroad.
There are only a few colleges and universities that offer mining and geology-related courses. Cruz said that even some of these schools have stopped offering the courses altogether.
“We found out that as of last year, courses related to mining and geology were not very active among colleges and used to offer them. There were only a few students who took them. We have to bring these courses back from inactivity,” Cruz said.
Cruz noted that the DoLE and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) are working on intervention programs to guide students in the third and fourth year of college to the right course they want to take.
He noted that many students fail to look for a job despite having graduated. He also stressed that tech-voc courses are good recourse for students hoping to land a very specific job, as well as to find employment abroad.
Cruz also stated that Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) is the lone body to provide assessment and certification of tech-voc graduates who are looking for jobs abroad. This ensures foreign employers of the quality of potential workers.
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