‘Impractical to have skills training centres all over Sarawak’

Datuk Amar Michael Manyin Jawong

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By Nancy Nais

KUCHING, May 8: The Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Research believes it is not feasible for the government to establish skills training centres such as Centre of Technical Excellence (Centexs), community colleges and Giat Mara in all state constituencies.

Replying to requests from other assemblymen at the State Assembly sitting today, its minister, Dato Sri Michael Manyin Jawong, explained that “apart from financial consideration, it is necessary to also consider the availability of trained teaching staff, sufficient enrolment of students and the opportunities for industrial placement or internship”.

This is to ensure that the training is in line with the needs of industries so that the trainees would be employable.

In view of the fact that Technical, Vocational, Education and Training (TVET) is necessary to provide an adequate supply of skilled workforce for Sarawak, Manyin said the ministry had implemented several initiatives such as continuous promotion through activities such as the annual Sarawak Career And Training Fair (SCaTFair) and the biennial TVET Symposium.

Since 2014 to 2018, the Sarawak government has also spent RM20.8 million to provide study loans to 4,352 TVET students.

As for institutions of higher learning (IHL), the ministry will focus on promotions to increase student enrolment at Swinburne University Sarawak Campus, Curtin University Malaysia, University College of Technology Sarawak (UCTS), Kolej Laila Taib and i-CATS, in which Sarawak has an interest.

“The government intends to promote Sarawak as an attractive destination for international students. Towards this, the state will organise a conference for international marketing agents of our local institutions of higher learning,” Manyin added. — DayakDaily