Some 176 Region Ten youths are now certified in various vocational courses, with some already working in Linden through Board of Industrial Training (BIT).

On Thursday, the Linden youths received their certificates after completing courses through the BIT National Training Project for Youth Empowerment (NTPYE).

The trainees are now certified in Heavy Duty Equipment, Electrical Installation, Garment Construction, Motor Vehicle Servicing and Welding and Fabrication. They were urged to maximize their potential and position themselves since Guyana, and specifically, the oil sector is anxiously awaiting their various skill set. In the interim, the youths have already benefited from employment at the Linden Electricity Incorporated, the Linden Sewing Institute, the Community Development Council and the Linden Technical Institute, among other places.

Technical Officer for Region 10 Coleena Johnson noted that some students came all the way from Malali, a community up the Demerara River and from mining communities, some distance away from Linden to participate in the programme. Of all the courses, Heavy Duty Equipment saw the largest enrolment of 43 students. Overall, the courses saw a pass rate of over 90 percent.

The training aimed at equipping them with the needed skills set which will in some way contribute to the development of the country. It particularly targeted youths who are not academically inclined and were unable to complete secondary school

Presenting the feature address to the graduates was Michael Turner, former Principal of the Linden Technical Institute who is also a prominent figure in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET). He said that today’s graduation signals that technical and vocational training is the wave of the present and future of Guyana.

“Vocational training cannot be underestimated and will always be the means by which people will enable their country and their individual livelihood to make progress,” he affirmed. With students deserving second chances, being enrolled, Turner highlighted that this will have also have a positive social effect since more youths will be meaningfully occupied.

Giving the charge to the graduates was Pastor Selwyn Sills of Linden who first commended BIT for seeing the potential in Linden youths, which moved them to invest in the various programmes.