More than 1,500 youth leaders made a show of force in a convention that focused on employment opportunities through technical vocational education and training (TVET).
At the 1st TVET Youth Leaders Convention organized by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and the National Youth Commission (NYC) for the CaLaBaRZon region on May 26, the youth came out with fresh ideas and initiatives about how TVET can take them to the path of decent and stable jobs.
"Young people are not only following the lead and becoming positive contributors, they are taking charge of their future," TESDA Director General Joel Villanueva said.
The student leaders of various youth groups from the different institutions in Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon (CaLaBaRZon) crafted policy recommendations that would boost the youth participation in TVET.
On May 13, a pre-convention workshop was conducted attended by 15 student leaders from each province to identify a policy plan that was presented during the general convention.
"It's bad enough to be young and uneducated. It's worse to be educated yet unemployed," Villanueva said.
To solve the problem of the youth's lack of education and unemployment, the government and the private sector are more and more looking to technical vocation education and training.
"Quality tech-voc is accessible and relevant and can get one easily into the workforce," he said.
"The young people themselves acknowledge this, and want to have a say on how the country's TVET program is being charted for them," Villanueva added.
The convention, held at the Batangas Convention Center in Batangas City, did not only draw student leaders, but heads from tech-voc institutions, local executives, including Batangas Representative Mark Llandro Mendoza, NYC commissioner for Luzon Percival Cerdana, TV5 Actor Mark Neumann.
Luisita Dela Cruz and Carlos Flores, TESDA officials for Region IV, also attended the convention.
As part of the forum on success stories with TVET, celebrity chef Pablo "Boy" Logro gave a talk on how he started from humble beginnings into a fruitful career through the tech-voc path.
Villanueva and Logro then faced off in a skills showdown to the audience's delight.
Villanueva is a certified barista, while Logro is also a tech-voc graduate and one of TESDA's career ambassadors. END