Last month, I spoke in Sarawak, Malaysia at the World TVET Conference, presenting on “Innovation through Partnerships and Collaboration in TVET” facilitated by IVETA. This key note presentation focused on innovative partnerships and collaboration through Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET) addressing business and industry needs as well as regional development that underpins economic development.
An amazing experience, meeting so many people from around the world all passionate about Vocational Education and Training and people skills development, was truly heart-warming. It was an absolute privilege to be looked after by the team at PPKS, especially Dahlia who greeted me at Kuching airport and Baha who headed the organising committee from Sarawak.
The night before the conference there was an event for speakers, committee members and VIP’s where we were given beads as gifts and understood that there were 1000 people registered from 28 countries.
An early morning start, Dahlia drove us through Kuching (meaning cat) to the impressive Borneo Conference Centre where I had a front row seat. It was clear from the outset how much thought and planning had gone into the conference and the My Skills Fair where students demonstrated their skills.
Following Datuk Dr. Pang Chau Leong, Director-General, Department of Skills Development, Ministry of Human Resources, Malaysia talk on Transforming TVET – Game Changer, under the 11th Malaysia Plan, 2016 – 2020, and Prof Dr. Georg Spoetti, Director, University of Bremen, Germany, speaking on Transformation and Globalization in Technical, Vocational Education and Training – Which Way Should TVET Take, I presented to a keen audience.
With a conference theme of Quantum Leap: Transformation and Globalisation of Technical Vocational Education & Training (TVET) – Living Skills in the 21st Century, worldwide, Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) aims to be a solution that solves a number of big problems.
These problems fit into the four main categories of human rights, business and industry needs, government policy and individual aspiration. Alongside the human rights aspects of TVET with the foundation of education, employment, equity, happiness, health and safety there are a number of business and industry needs including:
- Entrepreneurship and innovation
- Growth and expansion
- Priorities based upon industry advice and workforce demand
- Regional development
- Standardisation of delivery and assessment as well as production/quality certification (of goods)
- Turnover and profit
- Waste management
It was in these areas that I provided examples from Australia and around the world including Bhutan, Tasmania, South Australia, Robinvale, Sunraysia, Maldives, Philippines, Singapore and Auckland.
Government policy generally focusses on job creation, raising the educational attainment levels, providing a skilled workforce for businesses and industry plus addressing any barriers to engagement. Barriers may include the pool of people, in other words the sheer number of people to be developed, youth unemployment and participation rates, misalignment of the TVET system to business and industry needs.
Overwhelmingly, it is clear that there is a global need to better engage employers and industry in the TVET system and whilst in Sarawak I saw some outstanding examples of training providers working with industry partners.
The colorful opening ceremony and gala dinner demonstrated local customs, traditional dress and respect for TVET with a media throng capturing speeches, dignitaries like the Chief Minister of Sarawak, speakers and students.
Here are some of the links to media stories including front page of the Borneo Post:
- TVET to be premier education pathway for students by 2025
- Need to increase TVET capacity
- TVET to combat unemployment, poverty and reduce income disparity
- High Commission assures cooperation in TVET
- Skilled workers to be bulk of nation’s workforce
- Adenan: More students and parents see value in technical vocational education
- Sarawak on track to meet skilled worker demand
- Less talk more action on TVET
- Skills training needs upgrade
- TVET vital for Malaysia
- Promoting TVET Towards Attaining Economic Transformation
- Building a brighter future through TVET
You are invited to join the IVETA LinkedIn group and if you would like to know more about TVET, workforce planning and development strategies for your country, industry or region, please contact Wendy Perry via email@example.com.