A makeshift kitchen in a covered court in Barangay Sta. Cruz in Antipolo City became the stage for the showdown of skills between Secretary Joel Villanueva and celebrity chef Pablo "Boy" Logro.
Villanueva whipped up his signature Cappuccino to match Logro's Sizzling Salmon Steak in Mediterranean Lemon Butter Sauce in the friendly culinary face-off dubbed "Idol ko si Sec, Idol ko si Chef."
Villanueva, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director General, and Logro, one of TESDA's career ambassadors and cooking show host, said they hope to stir up interest among the youth to get into technical vocational education.
"From humble beginnings, Chef Boy showed us where the tech-voc route took him, and how hard work paid off," he said.
TESDA has variety of course offerings that would match the interest of the young people thinking of taking tech-voc.
At the end of the skills demonstration, the crowd was treated to a free taste of Logro's dish and Villanueva's coffee concoction.
As recognition to trainees who have completed their courses, Villanueva led the ceremony for the mass graduation of finishers of TESDA programs, namely, Training for Work Scholarship Program (TWSP), Private Education Student Financial Assistance (PESFA), Special Training for Employment Program (STEP) and the Bottom-up Budgeting (BuB). There were a total of 639 graduates.
Among the guests were local officials led by Antipolo Representative Robie Puno and wife, television host Chiqui Roa-Puno, City Mayor Casimiro Ynares, Councilor Josefina Gatbalayan, Barangay Chairpersons Pablo Oldan and Oscar Tamayao, and TESDA officials Luisita dela Cruz and Velma Salazar.
In Cainta town, Villanueva also attended the mass graduation of TESDA scholars who have completed their respective tech-voc courses.
The 1,013 graduates were among the thousands of beneficiaries in Cainta through the TWSP, PESFA, STEP and BuB.
"We are buoyed by the thought that TESDA has been part of developing their useful, broad skills as they journey to the world of employment," Villanueva said.
Joining TESDA officials at the mass graduation were Rizal Governor Rebecca Ynares, Cainta Mayor Jhonielle Keith Nieto, Jala-jala Mayor Narciso Villaran, Cainta Vice Mayor Pia Velasco, Rizal Technical Vocational Schools Association president Jose Montenegro, barangay chairperson Willy Felix, Cainta Elementary School principal Minerva David. END