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Villanueva ramps up tech-voc initiative in Caraga, northern Mindanao
by eTESDA PMU - Monday, 20 October 2014, 09:48 AM
Touching base with partner local government units, training institutions and industry associations in the promotion of technical vocational (tech-voc) education, Secretary Joel Villanueva vowed to bring more scholarships, greater training opportunities and a bit of entertainment with skills demonstration and basketball exhibition games featuring tech-voc graduates.

Villanueva, director general of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), hit the road on October 7 for his four-day trip that would take him to the Caraga and Northern Mindanao regions.

"At each stop, we will point out the government's efforts in ensuring that every Filipino youth has the opportunity to achieve quality education that is affordable and relevant, and potential avenue for employment," he said.

In his first event on Tuesday at Robinsons Mall in Butuan City, Villanueva led in awarding scholarship vouchers to beneficiaries before motoring to the TESDA Provincial Training Center in Surigao del Norte to speak at the TVET (Technical Vocational Education and Training) Stakeholders, Trainers and Assessors Conference.

On October 8, he traveled to Cabadbaran City in Agusan del Norte and to Gingoog City in Misamis Oriental to attend the graduation rites of the Global Mindanaw Polytechnic Inc. and meet with local officials.

In the city, Villanueva joined the basketball exhibition game dubbed “Shoot for your Dreams” organized by TESDA Region X as part of its social marketing and advocacy program.

Villanueva will play anew in the exhibition match, this time, at the Xavier University in Cagayan de Oro City on October 9.

Feting women entrepreneurs who were trained to better manage their businesses under the Coke-TESDA STAR (Sari-Sari Store Training and Access to Resources) program, Villanueva will be the guest of honor during their graduation ceremony in Misamis Oriental and in Cagayan de Oro City.

Capping his Mindanao trip, Villanueva will meet with local officials of Misamis Oriental and visit the Libertad Training Center.

"The local governments of Caraga and Region X (Northern Mindanao) have been TESDA's partners for many years now in investing in the youth by making available tech-voc education through a host of programs," Villanueva said.

"The government will continue to reach out to them and support them to ensure that their initiatives for tech-voc education will go a long way," he added.

In the recent 2014 Kabalikat Awards in which TESDA recognizes its partners, the provincial government of Agusan del Norte and the municipal government of Lugait in Misamis Oriental were awarded for the local government unit category.

Northern Mindanao is mainly agricultural, but has booming industries, particularly in Cagayan de Oro and Iligan. The five provinces under it are Bukidnon, Camiguin, Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental, and Misamis Oriental.

Caraga, meanwhile, is being envisioned to be the Fishery, Agro-Forestry, Mining and Eco-Tourism hub of the country by 2030 by developing the region's abundant resources.

"If this is the vision, then the region will need skilled workforce, and TESDA and its partner institutions and local government units are here to provide them," Villanueva said. END