Cotabato City (June 26, 2015) – A total of 4,562 students in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) successfully graduated with Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) certificates in vocational courses for the first semester of 2015.Datu Omar Shariff Jaafar, TESDA-ARMM executive director, said that this is part of the region’s efforts to develop and improve the socio-economic status of residents in the region.
“There is no age limit as long as they want to be trained and we are encouraging out-of-school youth, persons with disability, and those who do not have a job (to enrol in TESDA courses),” Jaafar said.
Courses offered include automotive and land transport, computer systems servicing, electronics products assembly and servicing, dressmaking, healthcare services, pharmacy services, security services, 2D animation, visual graphic design, metals and engineering, bartending, bread and pastry production, food and beverage servicing, and front office services.
This year, TESDA-ARMM hopes to generate 24,500 tech-voc graduates with employable skills in the region. The TESDA central office has allotted P21.28 million to 2,358 slots under the Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP), and P10.86 million for 1,203 slots under the Private Education Student Financial Assistance (PESFA) in the five provinces of ARMM.
TWSP and PESFA are scholarship programs currently implemented by TESDA that address equity and access issues by providing direct financial assistance to deserving technical-vocational education and training enrolees nationwide.
After a chosen training program is completed, a graduate will undergo competency assessment to determine if he can be certified as technical education and skills development specialist. Passers will be awarded TESDA National Certificate, or Certificate of Competency.
“After the 36 days of training, my welding skills will help increase my chances of getting a job,” said Rhiden Aguilar, a 35 year old graduate of Shielded Metal Arc Welding Course.
Unemployed women can also avail of training that could earn extra income, or even launch a business enterprise, such as food processing. Fatima Mamaluba, a 51 year old housewife in Upper Capiton, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao said she learned a lot from her training in food processing.
TESDA programs are free of charge to out-of-school youth, persons with disabilities, as well as employed and unemployed residents of the region. (Bureau of Public Information)