PETALING JAYA: Technical and vocational studies are not “secondclass education”, says the Prime Minister.
In fact, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin (pic) described the technical vocational education and training (TVET) programmes offered in the country’s public and private universities as among the best in the world.
“To students, and parents, who are at the crossroads in finding a suitable career pathway, I want to convince you that TVET education is a suitable choice as it is not second-class education meant for those deemed as dropouts or non-bright students.
“Career options offered through TVET institutions, like in successful countries, promise lucrative salaries, ” he said during the TVET Expo and Summit 2021 (TES2021) held at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre.
His speech was live-streamed.
TVET is a form of education and training that provides students with knowledge and skills for employment.
Muhyiddin said a free learning management system was developed by an educational technology company for TVET institutions that participated in TES2021.
The digitising effort, he said, was in line with MyDigital, or the Malaysia Digital Economy Blueprint he launched in February.
“I believe we will be able to move (digitising efforts) to a high level if this digital culture is practised holistically in all fields, especially in education.
“With the digitising of education, we will be able to build quality human capital equipped with the latest knowledge and skills to improve our quality of life, ” he said, adding that he hoped events like TES2021 would continue in years to come.
This effort, he said, could be a good start for Malaysia to become an international digital TVET education hub.
Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Dr Noraini Ahmad, whose speech was also live-streamed, said TVET was a main and important form of education.
Between 2018 and 2021, she said polytechnic and community colleges produced nearly 7,000 entrepreneurs among their graduates.
“Based on the findings of a study, the marketability of TVET graduates exceeds 95% every year.
“This proves that polytechnic and community college graduates continue to find (jobs) and are the employers’ and industries’ choice, ” she added.
The digitisation of TVET education needs to be implemented immediately, she said, adding that this was the right time for TVET institutions to seize the opportunities available to them to move towards digitisation.
“TVET in Malaysia needs to be seen not only as the education of choice, but the education of the future that needs to be in place to form graduates’ skill set to face the Fourth Industrial Revolution and technological changes in the job market.
“Through the National TVET Council, three strategic thrusts and 12 empowerment strategies have been outlined to strengthen TVET as a national agenda.
“These include integrated and coordinated governance, industry-driven TVET and TVET shaping the future, ” she said.
The involvement of TVET institutions in TES2021 was important to change society’s perception of skills education, she added.
Efforts such as providing a free learning management system to TVET institutions that participated in TES2021, she said, needed to be expanded and more institutions must work closely with the industry to improve TVET educational outcomes in the country.
“In fact, efforts and programmes such as TES2021 need to be carried out and implemented annually as it will be a platform to know more about TVET, ” she added.