‘Boost TVET uptake’

Technical and vocational education and training (TVET) is a crucial component of the Malaysian education system, serving a linchpin role in bolstering national economic growth and employment.

Training learners with high competency in industry-relevant skills to meet Malaysian market demands has long been a national priority, with the Higher Education Ministry having predicted a demand for an additional 1.3 million TVET workers by 2020 in the 12 National Key Economic Areas (NKEA), under the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP).

While various initiatives to promote TVET have been executed throughout the years, engagement in national TVET programmes remains relatively low.

Last year, Malaysia, according to the Unesco Institute for Statistics, saw only 6.1% of youth enrolment in TVET institutions, a low number when contrasted with its neighbours Singapore (23.8%), South Korea (14.2%) and Indonesia (12.8%).

Stakeholders stress that it is crucial to improve these figures.

It is important for us to have efficient TVET training in Malaysia because it provides young people with the skills that will make them employable, enhance their livelihoods and contribute towards a stable socioeconomic environment, said Federation of JPK Accredited Centres Malaysia (FeMAC) president Azizul Mohd Othman.

“With a readily available pool of skilled and competent talent, we will be able to meet various manpower needs.

“This is one of the factors that attract foreign investment and thus contributes towards a better economy for the country,” he told StarEdu.

The awareness of TVET is growing, he added, but since the onslaught of Covid-19, the number of youths enrolling in TVET institutions has been on a decline.

This, he said, could be caused by contributory social challenges such as financial hardships that result in the individual having to seek employment to support the family instead of acquiring knowledge and skills.

“The rising cost of living, coupled with other economic uncertainties, has made learning, be it skills or academics, less affordable as compared to before the pandemic,” he said.

While the government, through various ministries and agencies, is showing a concentrated push towards enhancing the country’s TVET system, it is crucial that practical and effective measures be undertaken immediately to improve TVET participation among youths today. — By TERENCE TOH

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TVET , FeMAC , unemplyment , education


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