Planning for your career is tough. There are a thousand and one things to consider. From the cost of education, your interests, job satisfaction, pay and managing social expectations; this is not an easy undertaking. Thankfully, there are many career paths and one compelling route is Technical and Vocational Education and Training or TVET for short.
According to UNESCO, TVET is:
“those aspects of the educational process involving,
- in addition to general education,
- the study of technologies and related sciences and
- the acquisition of practical skills, attitudes, understanding, and knowledge relating to occupation in various sectors of economic life.”
Technical and Vocational Education and Training consists of
- “apprenticeship training,
- vocational education,
- technical education,
- technical-vocational education,
- occupational education,
- vocational education and training,
- professional and vocational education,
- career and technical education,
- workforce education,
- workplace education, and others.”
Going into TVET will equip you with the practical skills that will transform you into a skilled worker ready for the real world. Increasingly, it has become more apparent that academic qualifications are not the be all end of career paths as seen with the oversupply of fresh graduates in Malaysia. However, the million RM question is this. Should you be considering TVET? Read on to let us make the case!
*Disclaimer: as choosing a career and education is an important life decision, we urge you to do more research after reading this primer.
1. Proposed Raising of Minimum Wage of Local Skilled Workers by the Govt
According to The Star and other news outlets, the Govt plans to raise the minimum wage for local skilled workers to RM3,500 up from RM1,200 — achieving parity with skilled foreign workers. This is part of the plan to eventually raise this amount to RM5,000 by 2030. This proposal was put forward by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahaid Hamidi along with other efforts to meet the demand for skilled workers who underwent TVET training.
Although this may or may not come to pass, it is clear that skilled workers are in high demand in Malaysia. This effort along with others shows that the Government is committed to making this a viable career path, This is in large part due to the demand for skilled workers and the shortage in supply of skilled workers.
Malaysia Needs More Skilled Workers
In a meeting with the press, Malaysian Chinese Association president Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai called for the training of more skilled workers that would allow Malaysia to be competitive in a variety of industries. Currently, Malaysia is facing a labor crunch in the logistics, manufacturing and agriculture industries. These industries had to resort to finding foreign workers to fill this gap. The stats back this up as well.
Compared to other developed countries, skilled workers in Malaysia consisted of only 28% of the local workforce, compared to 43% in developed countries. It is clear that there is a demand for local skilled workers that need to be filled in Malaysia. For a country to develop and progress; having skilled workers from TVET institutes are as important if not more important as having tertiary graduates.
New Jobs Created in Malaysia Will Require Skilled Workers With TVET
In addition, The Sun Daily reported that out of the 1.5 million jobs that the government is targeting to create by 2020, an estimated 60% will require someone with a TVET education. This comment was made by Human Resource Minister Datuk Seri Richard Riot Jaem.
Moreover, he added that people who underwent TVET training could access a myriad of employment opportunities as business people and digital technopreneurs. Clearly, the government is behind this initiative, raising the validity of embarking on TVET and becoming a skilled worker as a career path.
TVET Careers Are Promising And Rewarding
This point is subjective but we believe that it rings true for many. Not everyone is academically inclined or well suited for tertiary education.
A TVET education is great if you fulfill these criteria:
- You may prefer a more hands-on approach to learning that takes place outside the classroom.
- You already have an ideal career or some industry you would like to work in.
- You may feel that studying too much is waste of time and you would like to start work and soon as possible.
- You would like to learn practical things in the real world.
Most of these courses will allow you to work and study giving you a higher degree of freedom. TVET will allow you to do all these things and more.
Tertiary Education Is Expensive And Not Suited for Everyone
Let’s face it, university education is not for everyone. If the thought of the SPM gives you PTSD, pursuing an alternate career path may be better for you. Furthermore, studying in university is not cheap at all. An article by The New Straits Times in 2017 showed that tuition fees in the country cost an average of RM38,000 a year.
This puts a huge strain on the parents who send their children to the university as it may cost as much as half their salaries to send their children there. This fee does not include daily expenses and often many parents take up loans to send their children to university. In contrast, TVET programs are often cheaper, take less time, more flexible and offer good career prospects as well.
We hope that reading this article will provide you useful information about your future career and educational prospects. Do let us know in the comments if there is any more useful information about this topic!