All it takes is a few minutes in the dark during a power outage to realize how much we rely on electricity, and on the people who can get the problem fixed.
"Electrical linemen are the often unheralded people who power our world of modern convenience," Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director General Joel Villanueva said.
In recognition of this, TESDA will invest anew in giving them training to develop their skills to keep them not only productive at work, but also safe.
In a recent agreement with the Visayan Electric Company (VECO), TESDA will conduct the linemen's basic training program, which will focus on safety courses as well as the core modules such as installation, operation and maintenance of power lines.
The program will cover graduates of Electrical Installation and Maintenance from TESDA-7 regional training center, who will undergo a 22-day basic training for linemen to be held at the VECO Development Academy in Barangay Sirao, Cebu City.
Aside from the basic linemen training, VECO will also accept trainees under the Dual Training System with the Center for Industrial Technology and Enterprise and on-the-job-trainees from different technical vocational institutions in the area.
"Through constant training, we are trying to perfect the skills and work practices of our linemen, who probably are engaged in one of the most hazardous occupations," Villanueva said.
"Before picking up their toolbox, we want to make sure that electrical linemen are armed with the training and knowledge, and the physical stamina to do the job," he added.
In 2013, TESDA and VECO worked on the same training program that produced at least 97 graduates.
VECO also assisted in helping the graduates find jobs and absorbing them into the company. As of May 2015, it has already hired 127 graduates doing project-based status jobs related to the maintenance of VECO's distribution network.
The company's investment to technical vocational education and training has reached over P2 million, which included the cost of training, allowances and use of facilities.
A subsidiary of the Aboitiz Group of Companies, VECO is the second largest electric utility in the country. It serves the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Talisay, Naga and four municipalities of the greater part of Cebu. Its franchise service covers an area of about 674 kilometers with an estimated population of 1.73 million, according to the company's website.
During TESDA's anniversary celebration last month, VECO was recognized as one of the outstanding industry partners of the agency and was bestowed the Kabalikat Award.END