Despite election budget, Malaysia still needs to tackle long-term structural problems: Experts

Despite election budget, Malaysia still needs to tackle long-term structural problems: Experts

After failing to get a job with her engineering degree, the Ipoh woman became a maid to make ends meet.

It is problems like these that economists say must be tackled in Budget 2018 even though it’s likely be filled with “election goodies” targeted at the ruling coalition’s traditional supporters.

Aid and handouts are important for a significant portion of the population in 2018, but structural reforms to solve issues like youth unemployment and stagnant wages are critical for the country in the next five years.

“It will be timely for Budget 2018 to catalyse the shift towards private sector-led and market-based approaches,” said Dr Yeah Kim Leng of Sunway University’s Business School.

“(This is) to address the stagnant wage, weak employment growth, low productivity and over-dependence on unskilled foreign workers.”

Other issues that experts said the government needs to deal with include being disciplined with how it spends public funds and reducing barriers to business to drive more investment.

Although the government is expected to spend more in 2018 over expectations that revenue will increase, it should not overspend, said Dr Yeah.

“The budget should continue its prudent and disciplined path of fiscal consolidation and deficit reduction as this will ensure sustainable growth, enhanced investor confidence.”

Economist Lee Heng Guie said whatever extra money that is earned should be spent efficiently.

“The government should stay the path of fiscal consolidation to ensure optimal deployment of resources and preserve fiscal stability,” said Mr Lee, who is with the Socio-Economic Research Centre.

“With a broad-based consumption tax (the goods and services tax), the federal government does not suffer from a lack of revenue (so) it’s important not to overspend and to plug leakages,” he added.

This year, the economy grew at a stronger pace after a slump of two years, said Mr Lee, powered by consumer spending, rebound in private investments and a strong surge in exports.

“Real GDP (gross domestic product) growth roared back to expand strongly by 5.7 per cent year-on-year in the first half of 2017.”

This has allowed the overall unemployment rate to remain low at 3.3 per cent.

But the youth unemployment rate hit 10.6 per cent in 2016 and about 23 per cent of university graduates are unemployed, said Mr Lee, which is a worrying figure.

“The youth employability must be tackled both at the supply- and demand-side equations. It is not just a simple mismatch between training and job requirements.”

It is a problem that is closely tied with the rapidly changing technological landscape, the quality and investment in universities and industries’ addiction to cheap, unskilled foreign labour, experts said.

Mr Lee noted that getting more youths back in the job market requires more money and emphasis on technical and vocational education and developing entrepreneurs.

Economist Raja Rasiah of Universiti Malaya said that the government should consider introducing incentives for the creation of a dual-training system like how Germany does it.

The renowned German education system sees vocational schools and small and medium companies work together to produce highly skilled workers for industries. It has been credited for keeping youth unemployment low.

Dr Rajah added that more money should be spent on creating entrepreneurship programmes in public and private universities.

Mr Lee said policies to help companies to invest in the “Fourth Industrial Revolution” will also create new skilled job opportunities.

“The revolution is essentially about ‘smart factories’, leveraging on robotics, digitalised data censoring, the internet of things to reap cost savings in real-time quality control and maintenance.”

This calls for targeted incentives and grants, investment capital allowance and high-tech Industrial Adjustment Fund to facilitate more manufacturers, especially small and medium enterprises to automate and embrace industrial internet, he observed.

Upgrading the country’s industrial base will also help deal with another economic bugbear – addiction to low-skilled foreign workers.

Manufacturing firms need to be pushed more to upgrade their operations so that they relied less on low-skilled foreign workers, Dr Rajah stressed.

Lawmakers such as Mr Liew Chin Tong, said that Malaysia’s unchecked use of low-skilled foreign workers had led to depressed wages for everyone.

“(An) influx of unskilled foreign labour hurts the wages of Malaysians at all levels, not just for labour,” Mr Liew wrote on his blog.

“Since there is abundance of supply of labour, workers have no bargaining power to demand better pay and conditions in the ‘race to the bottom’ for wages.”

The use of less-skilled foreign labour in export-oriented firms has also reduced the pressure on firms to upgrade, said Dr Rajah.

Source: THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT

Malaysia needs 45pc skilled workforce by 2030

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 20 — At least, 45 per cent of the total workforce need to be skilled workers by 2030 to help realise Malaysia’s goal as a developed high income nation, says Yayasan Melaka International College chief executive Datuk Saroni Judi.

He said in this regard, the skilled workforce needed to be upgraded with continuous training to be more competitive in employment and to command higher earnings.

“Efforts in empowering TVET (Technical and Vocational Education and Training) have resulted in TVET gaining more recognition in the world for its role in the economic development of the country.

“Malaysia has almost 28 per cent skilled workers and targets to raise it to 35 per cent by 2020, while a developed nation like Switzerland has almost 50 per cent skilled manpower,” he added in a statement here today.

Saroni said investment in education was important to contribute to the wellbeing of the people inclusively and sustainably where the government through human resource development programmes allocated RM50 million to create competitive workers at global level.

Apart from that, the government was also committed to ensure TVET was implemented effectively by recognising the field as the third thrust in the 11th Malaysia Plan (11MP), he said. — Bernama

How Do We Equip Malaysia’s Workforce For Industry 4.0

The focus of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) recently received widespread attention in Malaysia, after Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced the government’s plan to develop a comprehensive TVET plan to help the future workforce in facing the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Coined by German economist Klaus Schwab in 2015, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is used to describe the emergence of the Digital Economy and use of automation and data exchange in industrial technologies. Commonly referred to with the catchprase Industry 4.0 it also included the Internet of Things and collaboration between networked machines and human beings in decision-making.

We might not feel it in our daily lives but robots and computers are slowly replacing some traditional jobs from the last century and creeping into our daily lives in the form of smart appliances and machines with computer programmes that can learn our habits and preferences.

Technology experts are already speaking about the coming industrial revolution as one that has the potential to disrupt every industry in every country due to the exponential pace that is the nature of digital revolution which is at the heart of Industry 4.0

This is already happening in businesses and industries as robotics and artificial intelligence can take over jobs traditionally manned by human labour, in particular technical processes that can easily be computerised.

As for the Malaysian government, they are going to allocate RM 50 million from 30 % of the Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) funds collected for the purpose of TVET, to increase competitiveness as well as improving the calibre of the workforce and the nation’s economic development.

While our nation is still in the process of streamlining vocational education to meet international standards, it also has to grapple with revamping the same fledgling TVET education structure to ensure the skills taught are not at risk of becoming obsolete.

What skills and education do TVET students need in order to ride the coming digital revolution and not risk having their expertise be replaced by a computerised machine?

To understand the importance of TVET in facing Industry 4.0, Malaysian Digest reached out to industry insiders for an insight on the matter.

Malaysia Is Lagging Behind Its Southeast Asian Neighbours In Implementing Vocational Education

Malaysian Digest interviewed Adlan Ali, an electrical engineering and TVET lecturer in Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka (UTeM). He has written many papers relating to TVET education, and have collaborated with many academic institutions, private companies and government agencies relating to TVET for the past 18 years.

Adlan Ali. Photo: UTeMAdlan Ali. Photo: UTeM“According to a report by the United Nations International Centre For Technical and Vocational Education and Training (UNEVOC), our country is still under the “awaiting validation” status. Meanwhile our neighbouring Southeast Asian countries such as Thailand, Phillipines, Indonesia, Myanmar and Cambodia have already been on the database way ahead of us,” said Adlan.

One of the reasons why our country is lacking in structured TVET education is because currently seven ministries and almost all state governments are running it.

Adlan strongly feels that this stands in the way of proper establishment for TVET governance, which is one the requirements to be fulfilled before Malaysia can be listed on the World TVET Database.

Fortunately, the government has realised the importance of TVET education, and has included its agenda as the third core in the 11th Malaysia Plan to elevate human resources development and making TVET transformation an identified focus field.

TVET lecturers around the country also collaborated to create a structure for the TVET education.

“Starting from a small fund of research grant and a small group of individuals, we have managed to collaborate together and developed the National Occupational Skills Standard (NOSS) for TVET Lecturers, Trainers and Educators. The NOSS has been recently approved and the name of the NOSS is TVET Implementation and Development,” he said, and members of the organisation include lecturers from UTeM, UniKL, UniMAP, Malaysia Science Academy and many other agencies.

As for adapting to Industry 4.0, TVET providers have seriously reviewed their existing programme’s objectives and learning outcomes to ensure FIR is well-stated and learned.

In the case of UTeM, they have recently reviewed its academic programmes at the university level, as well as offering new academic programmes that are tailored and suited towards the FIR.

Malaysia is yet to achieve a validated status by UNEVOC.Malaysia is yet to achieve a validated status by UNEVOC.

In order for the government to decide which industries must be focused in the current TVET education, all ministries and state governments must work with the Ministry Of Human Resource, under the Industry Skills Committee (Jawatankuasa Kemahiran Industri – JKI) and Skills Development Department (Jabatan Pembangunan Kemahiran – JPK).

“That way, we can detect what industries are potentially booming in the country and internationally, what industries are currently lacking competent workers what level of position the industries are lacking such as managers, engineers and technicians,” opined Adlan.

Most TVET graduates will be working in small-and-medium enterprises (SMEs). However, according to the Malaysian Productivity Corporation (MPC), ICT adoption by SMEs in Malaysia is a mere 10%. This is in stark contrast to other developed countries where the adoption stands at 50%. To meet the technological demands of Industry 4.0, ICT education must be taught to TVET students as well.

“Malaysian Industrial Development Authority (MIDA) has got to be given more roles and obligations, to ensure FIR is well within reach of the SMEs and very objective to be achieved.

“The partnership / collaboration between industries – TVET institutions must be made top priority because as far as I’m concerned, the existing scenarios are not that encouraging as the industries are focusing on meeting their production target, while the TVET institutions are focusing on their ‘on-paper only’ planning,” he explained.

The key to implementing TVET education in Malaysia, according to Adlan, is awareness. Industries must support the government’s plans and aspirations, helping the workers grow, and making the country’s TVET on par with the developed countries.

“At national level, we may talk about TVET and FIR but at the production and manufacturing ground level, I believe the awareness are still below par. With the existing global economic scenarios and Malaysian currency exchange, industries tends to commit on productions cum profits rather than focusing on TVET and Industry 4.0,” he shared with Malaysian Digest.

As Adlan highlighted, looking at the big picture is one thing but what about the actual situation on the ground? Malaysian Digest looks at the measures taken by local vocational training organizations to ensure their students can be at the forefront of the coming fourth industrial revolution.

GiatMara’s Role In Enhancing Skills, Knowledge Of The Nation’s Youth

GIATMARA is a government institution providing technical and vocational skills training to youths in rural and urban areas. Their aim is to ensure the students are equipped with the valuable skills to become technical entrepreneurs and workforce in fulfilling the country’s industrial needs.

In understanding how GIATMARA is helping the youths to adapt to today’s challenges created by FIR, Malaysian Digest contacted Dato’ Arman Azha, the deputy chairman of GIATMARA.

Dato' Arman Azha.Dato’ Arman Azha.“GIATMARA focuses on hands-on education, rather than theory-based reading. We have 231 GIATMARA centers all over the country,” he briefed Malaysian Digest.

Before the implementation of TVET education by Datuk Seri Najib Razak two years ago, GIATMARA created 22,000 graduates annually. Out of the 22,000 graduates, only 10% will be entrepreneurs, while the rest will be working in factories and workshops.

“However, since about one year ago, we decided to teach entrepreneurship skills to our students as well. From there, we created a course called Mobilepreneur Muda (Young Mobilepreneurs) in collaboration with Minister of Rural and Regional Development,” explained Dato’ Armand, in which the aim of the programme is at least 50% of their graduates will become SME entrepreneurs.

On top of the normal vocational lessons, the qualified students under this program will receive some assistance in the form of free motorbikes to help them move around, as well as equipment related to their vocational training. More importantly, they are taught to utilise technology to promote themselves in the digital market and adapt to the challenges of FIR.

In the past, GIATMARA provided small financial assistance to its graduates in helping them adapt to the industry. However, many of them mismanaged the money, so the organisation decided to help with other form of assistance.

“Instead of providing financial assistance, this programme is much more efficient and cheaper as well. In six months, the students under the programme must show their progress after we helped them.

“If they are doing well, then the equipment and motorbike will be given to them for free. On the other hand, if they failed to utilise our assistance well, we have the right to take the motorbike back,” he explained.

Mobilepreneur Muda intends to help vocational graduates in kickstarting their business.Mobilepreneur Muda intends to help vocational graduates in kickstarting their business.

This year alone, the programme has helped 3,000 young TVET enterpreneurs. Other than creating new programmes, GIATMARA also revises their curriculum and creates new courses to adapt to today’s demands that are shaped by the FIR.

New courses include aircraft maintenance, heavy machine maintenance and many others that are in high demand.

GIATMARA also realises the crucial role of technology in creating successful SMEs, and students are encouraged to make full use of the technology such as social media and smartphone applications to promote their businesses.

“In facing the FIR, we are providing digital courses as well, such as online marketing and graphic design.

“GIATMARA also revises our courses from time to time to ensure our courses remain relevant with today’s technological demands,” he concluded.

Introducing TVET Education To Tahfiz Students To Prepare For Industry 4.0

Maahad Tahfiz Vokasional Aman Bistari in Puchong.Maahad Tahfiz Vokasional Aman Bistari in Puchong.

One of the main points in Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s recently launched TVET initiative is to introduce TVET educational to tahfiz students as value add for them, whereby besides memorising the Quran, they would also have valuable trade skills.

The initiative is highly lauded by Mohd Asri Yunus, founder and principal of Maahad Tahfiz Vokasional Aman Bistari, a group of tahfiz schools in Malaysia that teaches not only Islamic knowledge, but vocational training as well.

Mohd Asri Yunus.Mohd Asri Yunus.“The first school was founded back in 2009. At first, we only taught culinary skills to our students. Over the years, we have expanded to nine vocational courses on top of culinary, such as sewing, calligraphy, animation, automotive repair, and farming,” explained Mohd Asri to Malaysian Digest.

While the students are learning the vocational skills, Islamic knowledge is at the core of the school’s basic education.

Maahad Tahfiz Vokasional Aman Bistari is the first vocational tahfiz center in the country, and since their inception have grown to six campuses all over Malaysia.

Students in the culinary hall.Students in the culinary hall.

A vocational institution graduate himself and former oil-and-gas employee, Mohd Asri was requested by the late Kelantan chief minister Tuan Guru Nik Aziz to transform traditional tahfiz center systems into a more modern system, one that teaches skills outside of religious knowledge as well.

“The syllabus that is taught in our centers is on par with the ones being taught at normal vocational institutions. Our equipment is industrial-grade, and we have spent more than RM60,000 to equip our schools.

“Even for our teachers, our tahfiz center hires industry veterans with certified qualifications and years of experience. For example, our culinary teachers are consultants to Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA) and many universities,” he said. In the future, the tahfiz center aims to create hospitality and mold-and-die manufacturing courses.

The center takes in students up to 17 years old, and prides itself of being a tahfiz center that teaches worldly skills on top of religious knowledge.

According to Mohd Asri, students in his center are less likely to lose interest in memorising the Quran as they are also taught interesting courses in between Quranic lessons.

The skills taught to the students are designed so that once they graduate, they can immediately work in their respective fields. The culinary students of the tahfiz center run their own conventional catering service for weddings and special functions, and the sewing students also take up orders from customers outside the tahfiz center so that the students can develop their skills to be marketable.

The students providing catering service to a special function.The students providing catering service to a special function.

“We emphasise hands-on approach. They prepare all the foods that the students eat, and the students sewed their own clothes as well. Once the students have been with us for more than a year, they will be sent to the industry for on-the-job training.”

The center is registered under the Selangor Islamic Department (JAIS) and receives funding from the parents, corporate sponsorships and state government. Even though their education is separate from the national school system, the students can take their SPM examinations when they are 18 years old.

Mohd Asri encourages other tahfiz centers to develop vocational education as well, however he admits that creating such education is not easy.

“For one, hiring the right teachers is difficult. Many qualified individuals refuse to work with tahfiz centers, and sometimes, the tahfiz centers have issues with hiring teachers that are not of religious background.

“For me, I do not care whether the teachers are religious or not. We only employ them for their expertise, and sometimes the teachers can learn religious matters from the students as well,” he relayed to Malaysian Digest.

Other challenges include high cost of starting vocational education, but Mohd Asri has seen tahfiz centers taking their own initiatives to help their students learn much-needed vocational skills. Some centers have collaborated with their local vocational centers and community colleges to teach the tahfiz students.

Many of Aman Bistari’s graduates have found jobs or even started their own businesses thanks to the skills learned while they were in the center. Mohd Asri hopes that his center can be an example for other tahfiz centers to follow to add value to their students, and embrace the call to TVET education by Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

— Malaysian Digest

Polytechnics can help reduce dependence on foreign labour

Polytechnics can help reduce dependence on foreign labour - DPM Zahid

DPM AHMAD ZAHID: We are confident that the government education system also focuses on TVET, which is better than any qualification that is not too technical. -Bernama

BESUT: Establishing polytechnics that offer technical and vocational education and training (TVET) can reduce the country’s dependence on skilled and semi-skilled immigrant workers, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said today.

Then, immigrant workers would only be required for the 3D (dirty, difficult and dangerous) occupations, he said.

“With the establishment of polytechnics, the Higher Education Ministry targeted a total of 100,000 students nationwide. I strongly support the policy and operating system implemented by Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh.

“When polytechnics focus on TVET, it means emphasis on training of skilled and semi-skilled workers. We know that jobs in our country in these skills depend on immigrant workers,” he said at the ground-breaking for the Besut Polytechnic building in Bukit Keluang here.

Also present were Terengganu Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Razif Abd Rahman and Idris.

The polytechnic is the 34th established so far.

“We are confident that the government education system also focuses on TVET, which is better than any qualification that is not too technical,” said Ahmad Zahid.

He quoted statistics indicating that 85 per cent of polytechnic students secure employment within six months after graduation while 50 per cent of eligible students who pass the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examination opt for polytechnics as their first choice in TVET.

Meanwhile, some 500 graduates were produced annually in the creative and information technology industries, he said, adding that he hoped that Idris would be able to work on producing 5,000 such graduates in the future.

“Education is an important asset of the country. It is also a long-term investment because we want to build social mobility.

“We want to improve the socio-economic status of the people,” he said.

The Besut Polytechnic was officially established on March 22 in line with the government recommendation under the 11th Malaysia Plan that promoted opportunities for technical and vocational education and training (TVET).

The Besut Polytechnic offers, among others, the Diploma in Digital Technology (Information Technology) and provides opportunities for students to contribute their skills in various sectors including agriculture, fisheries and manufacturing technology.

Besides the Besut Polytechnic, another polytechnic is to be built in Bagan Datuk, Perak, once the matter of land acquisition has been settled.

Source: BERNAMA

PM outlines several initiatives for TVET transformation

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak officiating the launch of TVET Malaysia at the Advanced Technology Training Centre (ADTEC) in Shah Alam on Sept 27, 2017. — Sunpix by Zulfadhli Zaki

SHAH ALAM: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak today outlined several initiatives to transform Technical and Vocational Education and Training in the country, which includes developing a TVET Masterplan.

He said the masterplan will be streamlined by the Ministry of Human Resources with other ministries involved in TVET like the Higher Education Ministry and Education Ministry.

Secondly, the prime minister said the government would allocate RM50 million from 30% of Pembangunan Sumber Manusia Bhd’s (PSMB) accumulated funds, for TVET.

“For the information of all, PSMB has set aside 30% of levies collected by the Human Resource Development Fund as a pool fund to implement strategic programmes as an effort to support achieving of national objectives in raising the level of skilled workers in Malaysia,” he said when launching TVET Malaysia at the Advanced Technology Training Centre (ADTEC) here today.

Also present were Human Resource Minister Datuk Seri Richard Riot Jaem, Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh and Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid.

Najib said that to transform TVET, special attention must also be given to Industrial Revolution 4.0 so as to create a workforce that is able to compete on the world stage.

He said that to support this revolution, collaboration was being forged with Skills Development Centres, polytechnics, universities and companies, entailing an allocation of RM75 million.

“Besides this, the government will also review the rate and charges related to filing of intellectual property as well as incentives that are suitable to encourage more innovation especially through the TVET institution,” he said.

The prime minister said human capital that was highly skilled was very important in transforming the national economy and function to narrow the the skills gap the country was facing, particularly by industry.

As such, he said that with Malaysia heading to become a high income nation, the government was committed to five core thrusts in transforming TVET including training 300,000 Malaysians from the lower income or B40 group from now until 2025.

The B40 group, Najib said, involved rural residents, urban poor, Orang Asli, school leavers and dropouts, single mothers and unemployed people.

“The government also plans to introduce TVET to tahfiz students as value add for them, whereby besides memorising the Quran they would also have skills in TVET.

“At the same time, from now till 2025, the government will make efforts to train and raise the number of teaching staff in TVET, whereby we are targeting 20,000 more Vocational Training Officers, thus contributing to training a higher number of people to have TVET qualifications.

“Besides that, the number of specialist trainers in TVET will also be increased by 4,000 people in various TVET fields by 2025,” he said.

As for the second thrust, Najib said the government was committed to strengthen and intensify strategic Public-Private Partnership cooperation or between TVET and industry to create synergy in developing quality human capital.

The strategic cooperation, he explained, could be realised in various forms like industry contributing expertise or machinery and equipment for training in certain fields where the industrial market badly needs such human capital.

“Thirdly, for TVET graduates, career opportunities are not only limited in the industry, TVET graduates can also venture into business, especially technopreneurship or become technopreneurs in technical fields.

“Fourthly, in the 2017 Budget, the government has allocated RM20 million for the purpose of matching grants, where the financial provision is given at the same value of contributions received from industry for high impact TVET programmes. Surely, this grant can be utilised in joint ventures between public agencies and the private sector to train and produce more skilled manpower.

“Fifth is to brand the TVET institutions in this country as TVET Malaysia, where all TVET institutions under various ministries are united as a great collaboration to train Malaysians, especially young people to become a highly skilled technical workforce,” he said.

The prime minister said TVET Malaysia should be used as an ongoing campaign to attract Malaysians to choose TVET as the main choice in their career path.

Indirectly, Najib said it would be able to change and correct the negative perceptions of the people who often thought that TVET was the second or last choice and was only ventured into by those who did not have good academic qualifications.

In conjunction with the launch of TVET Malaysia, the prime minister also attended a TN50 dialogue session with students from TVET institutions nationwide, which aimed at gaining their aspirations in the field of human capital development in the future.

The event also recognised seven TVET icons who are successful in their career and business.

Source: BERNAMA

PM moots vocational training for tahfiz students

Najib today launched an initiative to rebrand all vocational training centres to spur a collaborative movement across several government ministries headed by the Human Resource Ministry. ― Bernama picSHAH ALAM, Sept 27 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today mooted providing technical and vocational training for students of Islamic religious schools, or tahfiz schools in Malaysia.

Najib said that providing such trainings for tahfiz students would allow them to gain valuable technical experience while becoming well versed in the Quran.

“I suggest introducing Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) to tahfiz students as an addition to their abilities. They would be well versed in Al-Quran and also have skills,” he said during the launch of a rebranding campaign for all vocational training centres in Malaysia.

Najib today launched an initiative to rebrand all vocational training centres under the same umbrella called TVET Malaysia, to spur a collaborative movement across several government ministries headed by the Human Resource Ministry.

Najib said that Malaysia must strive to produce a generation with skills to undertake new jobs, which are likely to be created in the future with the advent of technology.

“Back in the 1960s, we had only four TVETs, but now there are over 1,000 TVETs across Malaysia,” Najib pointed out.

The transformation and rebranding of TVETs are part of the National Blue Ocean Strategy (NBOS).

The aim, Najib said, is to enable TVETs to help 300,000 students from the B40 category by 2025.

Source: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/pm-moots-vocational-training-for-tahfiz-students

Closing of IPGs no cause for worry

Datuk Joseph Salang

SIBU: There is no need for the people to worry about the decision to close down the Teachers Training Institute (IPG) Rajang Campus.

According to Julau MP Datuk Joseph Salang, the government would convert the institute into a technical and vocational education and training (TVET) centre for the state.

“The trend is now more for the world to shift from academic to vocational and technical education.

“Many graduates are now getting less marketable than those with technical education and training,” he said at ‘Projek Simfoni Kasih 4.0’ held by Betong Vocational College at Rumah Selikau, Nanga Selaut Tengah in Julau recently.

“There is this fear that Sarawak would not be able to produce 90 per cent local teachers when the college is closed down in 2020.

“But our universities are also producing trained teachers as well,” said Salang, stressing that the country would also need more technically-qualified youths apart from administrators. If we want to be a progressive nation, we need to follow suit,” he said.

On the government’s intention to set up more TVET institutions, Salang said this is a very good thing for the youth.

“I am sure they will not only be learning to use Bahasa Malaysia, but will also be making use of English as the medium of instruction for some of the subjects that they may take,” he said.

Earlier in his speech, Betong Vocational College director Lim Ah Juan said the objective of the two-day programme was to instil and develop good social values and communication skill in its students.

Source: http://www.theborneopost.com/2017/09/25/closing-of-ipgs-no-cause-for-worry/

Najib to launch TVet Malaysia

MIRI: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak is scheduled to launch Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVet) Malaysia on Sept 27.

Minister of Human Resources Datuk Seri Richard Riot Jaem said TVet Malaysia is the Ministry of Human Resources’ (KSM) branding initiative for its TVet programme.

“KSM will continue to empower TVet to be the top choice among the people, including through the launch of TVet Malaysia,” he told a press conference after the Manpower Training Institute (ILJTM) convocation ceremony at the Industrial Training Institute (ILP) Miri on Tuesday.

“I believe that through TVet Malaysia, the number of skilled workers in the country will be improve and will achieve the target of 35 per cent of skilled manpower by 2020.”

He stressed that TVet contributes to a high-income economy and should not be considered a second choice.

Riot added ILJTM will ensure its courses are relevant to National Transformation 2050 (TN50).

“I urge more students to venture into technical and vocational fields to a higher level to meet the needs of local and global industries,” he said.

He noted that 92 per cent of ILJTM graduates, including from ILP and Advanced Technology Training Centre (Adtec), were employed within six months after graduation.

The convocation ceremony saw the presentation of 129 diplomas and 664 certificates to ILP Miri, ILP Kota Samarahan and Adtec Bintulu graduates.

Ministry of Human Resources main driver in developing TVET in Malaysia

Datuk Seri Richard Riot

MIRI: The role of the Ministry of Human Resources as the main driver in developing technical and vocational education and training (TVET) in Malaysia is undisputed, said its minister Dato Sri Richard Riot Jaem.

According to him, various programmes have been designed through the Skills Development Department (JPK) to uphold skills training in tandem with the latest industry and technology development.

“The state has taken a serious emphasis on technical education in the effort to produce a skilled workforce to meet the needs of the industry, especially in the Sarawak Corridor of Renewable Energy (SCORE) development region.

He pointed out that the direct involvement of JPK and the state government in promoting skills training to youths is a proactive move.

“By organising Sarawak World Skills Competition 2017, which began in late August until September 2017, it proves our seriousness in recognising local youth talent in the competing skills fields so it can be featured until the international level,” he said at the ministry’s ‘Majlis Jalinan Ramah Mesra’ dinner here on Monday.

Riot pointed out that his ministry has always been involved in the industry to ensure that students at the Human Resources Department Training Institute (ILJTM) students are exposed to the latest training to enhance their skills.

“A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by ILJTM in Sarawak with, among others, Petronas Carigali, Sarawak Energy and Telekom Malaysia. These collaborations are aimed at training students in relevant industry fields,” he said, adding such efforts are value-added to students and will make them more competitive, as well as increase their level of workability in the marketplace.

Riot also highlighted the achievements of former ILJTM graduates in their respective fields who are currently earning high salaries.

“I was made to understand that one of the graduates of Industrial Training Institute (ILP) Kota Samarahan, namely Michael Likik Engong, is working as a senior machinist at Heerema Marine Contractors in the Netherlands and is earning a monthly income above RM20,000.

“Congratulations too to ILP Miri on its Welder Arm project victory in the Asean New Invention Innovation category at Crown Prince CIPTA Award 2017 in Brunei last May. This proves that the Manpower Department (JTM) succeeds in producing high-profile and high-income human capital,” he said.

Assistant Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Lee Kim Shin and JTM deputy director general Norman Kusin were among those present at the dinner.

Concerns raised over racial polarisation at public vocational schools

Educationist says government should look into the extremely low non-Malay student enrolment at public vocational schools, noting that most non-Malays enrolled in private vocational institutions.

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KUALA LUMPUR: Public technical vocational education and training (TVET) institutes in Malaysia are dominated by Malay students, raising concerns among educationists of racial polarisation at such establishments.

Chang Yun Fah, who is a lecturer at Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR), claimed that over 90% of students enrolled at public TVET institutions were Malay.

“There appears to be a racial imbalance of ratio in the enrolment of students in public TVET institutes.

“A vast majority of these students belong to the Malay ethnic group. The cause of this must be ascertained and understood,” Chang said at a forum yesterday on issues concerning higher learning institutes.

Chang said in 2010, only 1.6% of about 60,590 students enrolled in public vocational and technical schools were non-Malay.

“While most Malays are in public TVET institutions, most non-Malays enrolled in private TVET institutions,” he added.

He said the government should address the issue and determine whether it is due to monocultural or monolingual environments.

“Academically weak non-Malay students who are not proficient in Bahasa Melayu must be given attention,” he said, adding that a multilingual approach in running TVET courses should be considered.

“Efforts in ensuring equal opportunities in TVET institutions should be included in the Malaysian Higher Education Blueprint 2015-2025 (HEB).”

To eliminate racial polarisation in TVET institutions, Chang said the education ministry should ensure in both policy and practice that all opportunities for education were open to all Malaysians, regardless of race or creed.

He was speaking at a forum after the launch of a book titled “Feedback and Recommendations on HEB 2015-2025”, a response by an education pressure group called the National Education Reform Initiative (NERI) to the education blueprint.

HEB was made public in April 2015.

NERI is a coalition of 17 non-governmental organisations created in 2014, comprising educationists, researchers and scholars.

Source: http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com

Comment: I personally view that one of the challenges is the delivery medium, where most if not all public TVET institutions teaches in the national language & the candidates are usually very weak in the language, hence they couldn’t cope or not interested with what’s being taught in their previous school prior to being a dropout or completed their studies with low academic results.