Since 2010, the technical vocational education and training (TVET) sector has given training to more than 10 million individuals of which 8.9 million have so far graduated.
Of the number of graduates, at least seven out of 10 or 65.4% have found employment, according to a study by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA).
As he tendered his resignation from the agency as its Director General on October 9, former Secretary Joel Villanueva said his greatest achievements are the TESDA graduates who have dreamt, achieved and experienced better lives because of tech-voc.
Villanueva will run for senator in the May 2016 elections.
He said the successful graduates of TESDA are its “trophies” and proofs of success.
“Ito po ang tropeong iwinawagayway at ipinagmamalaki ko po ngayon. It pays to dream big,” he said.
Villanueva was emotional when he announced his candidacy during the TESDA Scholars’ Day on October 6, his final event with the agency.
“I will miss my TESDA family, but I am leaving at peace knowing that TESDA will be in good hands,” he said.
“It will be in good hands because I know that TESDA executives and staff are among the most professional, most efficient and most hard working crop of servants in the bureaucracy,” he added, addressing the agency’s executives and staff.
Villanueva thanked the people of TESDA for five fruitful years of working together to bring quality, relevant, innovative and accessible TVET, especially to the Filipino youth.
“Sa laki ng inyong puso sa paglilingkod, nadala natin ang TESDA sa puso ng ating mga kababayan. Kaya salamat sa inyong lahat, salamat sa pagsama sa akin, salamat sa inyong pagmamahal, salamat sa pagtitiwala na anumang kaya nating isipin, kaya nating gawin,” he said.
“Kaya hindi po ako papayag na hindi magpatuloy ang pagyabong ng TESDA, ang paglawak ng papel nito sa paglikha ng mga trabaho, at ang pagpapatatag ng kinabukasan ng mga kabataang Pilipino,” he added.
Villanueva also hailed the private sector, local government units and organizations that are partners of TESDA in carrying out its tech-voc programs.
With the private sector such as big companies and business organizations helping carry the banner of TESDA, the stigma against tech-voc is now gone.
He also thanked President Benigno Aquino III for allowing him to serve in the agency.
“Ito ang pinakamasarap na trabaho - ang samahan ang ating mga kababayan sa pagtupad ng kanilang mga pangarap. Salamat Pangulong Aquino sa pagbibigay sa akin ng pagkakataong makapag-ambag para sa masayang pagbabago,” he said.
“Mr. President, you are the best leader - mentor - coach in the world. Thank you for the inspiration, thank you for your love to TESDA. We will always remember you as the President who has championed tech-voc in the country,” he added.
He vowed to put premium on TVET, education reforms and jobs in his campaign platform. END