Ministry of Education, Guyana

Thursday, 13 September 2018 08:08

Former sugar estate workers among graduates of impactful IN-STEP programme

Eighty-four berbicians graduated today from the Industrial Skills Training Enhancement Programme (IN-STEP) at the GuySuCo Training Centre, Port Mourant (GTCPM). Among the graduates were former employees of the closed sugar estates, residents and youths from communities which were dependent on the sugar estates.

According to the Manager of the GTCPM, Mr. Jainarine Sookpaul, the aim of the programme is to provide support and opportunities to former employees who were affected, their families and residents in the communities. news 20180913 2
He said that the project was a collaborative effort between the GTCPM, the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Board of Industrial Training (BIT). He said that training commenced on June 22nd, 2018 at the GTCPM.
Mr. Sookpaul explained that the courses offered were Basic Welding and Fabrication, Basic Electrical Installation, Basic Motor Vehicle Servicing and Minor Repairs and Basic Refrigeration.
He reported that the performance of the 84 graduates, 11 being women, was commendable as 39 students achieved distinctions, 25 students achieved credits while 20 students achieved passes in their respective disciplines. The best graduating student is Sunil Ramlachan. news 20180913 4
Further, Mr. Sookpaul explained that the duration of each course was 120 hours. Classes were held on Fridays and Saturdays under the instruction of highly competent lecturers from the GTCPM and the Albion Estate.
He said that monitoring and evaluation was done weekly by the management of the GTCPM and representatives of the Natural Resources Ministry and BIT.
Additionally, he said that at the commencement of training each student was given a code of conduct. He reported that there was no breach of the code and the training sessions were conducted free of accidents or injury.
He said that the programme was funded by the Ministry of Natural Resources which included a stipend for students that were travelling from far distances. Mr. Sookpaul went further to state that the GTCPM has been engaging members of the private sector community to secure employment for the graduates as well as to create avenues for some to further their studies at the New Amsterdam Technical Institute and the Upper Corentyne Technical Institute.
Meanwhile, IN-STEP Project Coordinator, Ms. Mariscia Charles who delivered remarks from the Ministry of Natural Resources, said that the programme was facilitated under the Ministry’s capacity building 20180913 3
She told the graduates, “Take this programme as a stepping stone to propel you to greater things. Let this programme catapult your duty of public service to the development of Guyana, your social responsibility of being active participants in the change process, you building a pathway of increased growth through re-integration into the job market and greater investment into your personal development by furthering your studies.”
The keynote speaker at today’s graduation exercise was the Minister of Education, Hon. Nicolette Henry. Promoting the value in education, Minister Henry told the graduates that education is vital in every aspect of life.
She said that ‘life-long learning’ is an important pillar of the Ministry of Education’s mandate and that today’s graduates were a shining example of 20180913 5
According to Minister Henry, most people associate learning with formal education at school, college, tertiary and university. Though the resulting qualifications gained at these institutions are important, Minister Henry said that formal education is only one type of learning.
She said, “There are many other opportunities to further your knowledge and develop the skills you need throughout your 20180913 1
Knowledge can be acquired and skill-sets developed anywhere. In life, learning is unavoidable and happens all the time. However, lifelong learning is about creating and maintaining a positive attitude to learning both for personal and professional development.”
The Education Minister told the graduates that their new training will allow them to participate directly in the development of Guyana. She said, “You are now ready to gain employment in the region supporting the direct and indirect services of the petroleum, mining, agriculture and other economic sectors. Or you can even branch out on your own creating new business which in turn will create new jobs for your community.”
Minister Henry congratulated the graduates for their exemplary achievement and urged them to go on to create diverse industries in Guyana that will yield maximum productivity.

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