Malaysia has been imposed with Movement Control Order (MCO) since 18th March 2020 and now has been extended to 14th April 2020. Will it be extended? Yes, there’s a possibility for another 2 weeks, depending on when our numbers peak.
What about TVET institutions? Though it’s harder, it’s not totally impossible with AR/VR technologies that are available (though the cost may be an issue since it’s not widely adopted yet). TVET institutions should also harness video conferencing technology like Zoom to conduct lectures, esp theoretical in nature. Google Classroom may also be used to deliver lecture notes and assignments (There is a variety of suitable online and social media platforms to plan, instruct and assign homework to students)
However, there are differences in accessing technology among teachers, parents and students. In considering students with limited Internet access, teachers can assign them activities using textbooks, workbooks, exercise books and activity books, ensuring no student is left behind in their studies.
That’s in terms of delivery to existing students. What about the recruitment of future students? The economy looks bleak & world recession seems unavoidable.
What’s a recession? It’s a constriction of economic activity which means people are spending less money & companies are making fewer profits. Now, normally it takes many months for people’s confidence to come back, for them to spend money again. But this time is different. It is not a financial crisis, not an economic crisis, it’s a health crisis!
So people are not spending money because they can’t go out, they are stuck at home@stayathome, they are quarantined! What do you think would happen when this crisis is over?
That’s right, there’s gonna be a lot of pent up demand! People are going to run out there, going back to their favourite kepci (KFC) & mekdi (McD), travelling or going cruise again. And for those students who have been unable to visit institutions during the Open Day in March, they would be hungry to visit your institution, provided you have built the awareness and done enough telemarketing or online marketing during this MCO!
Now how long will it take this crisis to be resolved? No one can be sure but let’s look at China. They managed to resolve the crisis in less than 3 months because they shut the cities down. And I believe with Malaysia’s tough measures on the MCO, we will be able to overcome this within the same period, or even faster.
But are you ready when the MCO is over? If you’re not, too bad. Opportunity goes to those who are prepared.
So, if your marketing staffs are doing nothing at home now due to low/no leads, you better take action now! Grab quality student data FAST before your competitor does it.
Call/WhatsApp or email to ismarteducare @ gmail.com to supercharge your institution/college with more students NOW!
Referring to the article published by NST on 3/3/2020, our 21 public-sector universities and 38 private-sector universities produce something like 51,000 graduates a year, but nearly 60% remain unemployed one year after graduation, according to a study in 2018 conducted by the Minstry of Education Malaysia’s Graduate Tracer Study.
There are many factors contributing to this, such as mismatch of skills (most academic programs are based on theory only but not practical in the real world), poor language skills (especially English), interpersonal & communication skills etc.
So, even if you excel academically, academic route may not be the best choice except for certain professional programs like law, medicine, pharmacy etc where academic pathway is the only option.
There are hundreds of TVET/skills programs for you to choose from, you may refer to the National Occupation Skills Standards (NOSS) for a start/guide. However, not all programs are offered by the public & private TVET/skills centres, accredited by Department of Skills Development (DSD)@Jabatan Pembangunan Kemahiran (JPK).
WITH the year fast drawing to a close, Higher ED looks back at the highlights and events that have shaped and influenced the tertiary education space.
This year, Malaysia took great strides to provide inclusivity and quality education to various levels of the society.
Increased pathways were created for access into education at various higher education institutions (HEIs). There was a keen focus on making tertiary education provide graduates with relevant skills and knowledge that would fit both industry demands and society needs as well as push further the pursuit of knowledge.
These were all drawn up via a clear framework stipulated in the Education Minister’s 2019 Mandate that was unveiled in January where four key directions were cited for higher education ― quality, autonomy, collaboration and internationalisation ― that aimed to bring back credibility to universities.
In preparing students to become society’s troubleshooters, *universities must create collaborations with various parties, such as schools, polytechnics and vocational colleges.
For Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), the ministry would continue to improve its institutional capabilities to be on par with other educational pathways.
A harmonised accreditation system with quality assurance would be established to enable student mobility in TVET institutions.
The quality and delivery of TVET programmes would be increased to improve the skills of graduates through an industry-led approach, removing duplication of programmes and resources, increasing cost-effectiveness and expanding TVET funding.
Plans on access, wider pathways for furthering education, autonomy and quality education were generally made good on as the year progressed.
The Education Ministry announced special pathways to public universities for four groups, namely, people with disabilities, athletes, Orang Asli and those in the B40 group in early March.
Students from these priority groups do not have to compete with the mainstream group to pursue their tertiary studies.
In line with the ministry’s Education for All concept, this initiative follows in the footsteps of developed countries in prioritising the admission of athletes into varsities.
Some 51,191 students from B40 group benefited from the special routes to public universities and special training institutes, of which 32,282 made it into public universities.
HEIGHTENED FOCUS ON TVET
To formulate more relevant policies to implement the TVET agenda according to industry needs, the TVET Empowerment Committee named Maszlee chairperson in May.
In July, the Malaysian Qualifications Agency revealed that there would soon be alternative pathways to provide opportunities for working adults and undergraduates to have a PhD qualification.
MQA chief executive officer Datuk Dr Rahmah Mohamed said the agency was carrying out an implementation study of the next phase of the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL) programme where work experience could be translated into a masters or doctoral degree, or speed up the process of getting a PhD.
Defined as a systematic process involving identification, documentation and assessment of prior experiential learning, the programme thus far has created access to certificate, diploma, bachelor’s degree and master’s degree study programmes to individuals with working experience but lack or are without proper academic qualifications.
MQA targeted to introduce APEL T-8 and APEL Q next year that would give access to PhD level qualifications. APEL T-8 is an extension of APEL A, which provides higher education opportunities based on a person’s working experience.
APEL Q awards master’s and doctoral level academic qualifications without class attendance.
The purpose of the various initiatives is to ensure there is a growth in the number of postgraduate degree holders, in line with the country’s aspiration of becoming a high-income nation.
To level up human capital in the country, Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng, when tabling Budget 2020 in Parliament in October, announced an allocation of RM64.1 billion in 2020 for education ― reflecting the government’s commitment to provide quality education at different stages of life for the rakyat.
From the sum, a whopping RM5.9 billion is dedicated to mainstreaming TVET which include, among others, funding to strengthen the synergies between the public and private sectors through increased allocation for State Skills Development Centres and Public Skills Training Institutions as well as expanding pathways for TVET graduates to pursue further studies and secure jobs.
To encourage adult learning, Lim said the Employees Provident Fund will be allowed to facilitate the withdrawal for qualifications attained at certificate level, especially for accredited programmes that are in line with the nation’s IR4.0 aspirations.
The withdrawal scheme will include members’ parents and spouse.
A RM20 million allocation will be made available to be matched by another RM20 million from the Human Resource Development Fund towards having working adults take up professional certification examinations in fields relating to IR4.0.
Emphasis on learning opportunities under MARA and Yayasan Peneraju Pendidikan Bumiputera for low-income and rural bumiputeras through education institutions such as Kolej GIATMARA and Universiti Kuala Lumpur will be continued with an allocation of RM1.3 billion for education institutions under MARA for 2020, with a further RM2 billion allocated for student loans, benefiting 50,000 students. In addition, RM192 million is also allocated for professional certification programmes under Yayasan Peneraju.
To drive economic growth in the digital era, the government encourages the provision of technology scholarships, training and upskilling for digital skills for communities in need through the concept of Digital Social Responsibility (DSR).
DSR is the commitment by businesses to contribute to digital economic development while improving the digital skills of the future workforce.
Enhancing the research and development framework was also cited as a key strategy to drive economic growth in the new economy.
For that, Lim announced that the government will allocate RM30 million for R&D matching grants for collaborations with industry and academia to develop higher value-added downstream use of palm oil, specifically tocotrienol in pharmaceuticals and bio-jet fuel.
“To promote commercialisation of R&D from the public sector, research universities, beginning with UM, will establish a one-stop Innovation Office to transform intellectual property into commercially exploitable opportunities,” said Lim.
In November, the Education Ministry announced the replacement of the science/arts streaming system in upper secondary into a system where students can choose from 89 elective subjects grouped in two packages: STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths), and Arts and Humanities under the new Secondary Schools’ Standard Curriculum (Upper Secondary) or KSSM Menengah Atas.
This will give students a taste of what they might pursue at tertiary education level and maybe even get a headstart in their desired future careers.
In a briefing, Education Ministry deputy director-general (policies and development) Dr Habibah Abdul Rahim advised students to pick their subjects wisely because it paves the way for their future.
She added that the students can change subjects midway through schooling but noted that it will not be an easy feat because there will be a lot of catching up to do.
1. Acts as a bridging program to matriculate TVET/SKM/DKM graduates to university. 2. Provides an opportunity for TVET/SKM/DKM graduates to enhance career, especially to a managerial position with better leadership skills. 3. Elevates social status of TVET/SKM/DKM graduates and experienced skills personnel.
FOR the nation to move forward in tandem with the Fourth Industrial Revolution (IR 4.0) and beyond, there is a clear need for a well-trained technical workforce with skill sets that are present- and future-ready as well as future-resilient.
Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) programmes have always been seen as the vehicle to prepare aptly-skilled human capital but somehow the general perspective is that they fall short in terms of the level of skills and knowledge needed for the industry to forge ahead.
Graduates who have qualified from TVET institutions previously do not have a clear career pathway to further their studies and secure jobs that are highly technical in nature.
To create more career pathways and opportunities for TVET students, the Education Ministry with the Malaysian Technical University Network (MTUN) comprising four universities — Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM) , Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka (UTeM) , Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP) and Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP) — and the professional body for technologists and technicians, the Malaysia Board of Technologists (MBOT), have collaborated in establishing newly developed Bachelor of Technology Degree (BTech) programmes in specific technology fields.
Some universities have introduced several of the courses last month at the beginning of the 2019/2020 academic year while other universities will make the courses available in September next year.
The articulation process entails matching the courses, requirements and coursework at vocational colleges with that at higher education institutions.
“KVs start enrolling students as young as 16, post PMR/PT3 examination towards Diploma Vokasional Malaysia (DVM) through Sijil Vokasional Malaysia (SVM) without SPM. That posed a problem for the graduates should they decide to pursue a Bachelor’s degree and beyond at public universities. Other than that they often face difficulty in transitioning from TVET-based education to an academic-based degree programme,” he explained.
The entry level requirement for BTech programmes in MTUN is not based solely on SPM qualification, Ahmad Zaidee highlighted.
For DVM graduates, most of the candidates have taken the equivalency courses to SPM’s Bahasa Melayu dan Sejarah, namely Bahasa Melayu 1104 as well as Sejarah 1251. For DKM and DLKM graduates, most of the students have taken SPM which already includes Bahasa Melayu and Sejarah.
In any case this nation-building initiative is not met, MTUN has agreed the student can enrol for the courses during their tenure years of BTech studies.
“MBOT through Technicians Act 2015 (Act 768) has established the Technology & Technical Accreditation Council (TTAC). This is a Joint Technical Committee with the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) to perform accreditation on professional technology and technical programmes. The council has published a Technology & Technical Accreditation Manual 2019 (TTAC MANUAL) for a comprehensive guideline for education providers (EP) to design and develop their programmes in the advanced technological fields,” he said.
UniMAP Academic Management Office dean Professor Dr Anuar Mat Safar said the availability of BTech programmes for DVM and DKM qualification holders is timely.
“It is estimated there are 50,000 students graduating with DVM and DKM every year. With the availability of BTech programmes, these students can obtain Bachelor’s degree-level qualifications as per required to face the challenges of IR 4.0,” he said.
The main difference between BTech and conventional degree programmes is that the former were developed based on occupational requirement while the latter are more discipline-based, UTeM vice-chancellor Professor Datuk Wira Dr Raha Abdul Rahim explained.
“In conventional degree, fundamental and technological courses such as mathematics, physics etc are taught separately. In BTech programmes, the focus is for a graduate to perform a task in the work environment, hence fundamental and technological knowledge that is usually taught in different courses are embedded into a course on a particular competency set,” she said.
For example, she illustrated that a BTech Welding programme comprises a course of Welding inspection that combines elements of mathematics, physics, material studies, and local laws accordingly rather than have the subjects taken in separate courses, as with conventional programmes.
UTHM vice-chancellor Professor Datuk Dr Wahid Razzaly, meanwhile, explained that the current delivery or execution of BTech programmes uses the approach of Work Based Learning (WBL) in block released manner. This means the students undergo their studies in two phases: two and a half years at university and another year in the industry.
“The curriculum structure is towards preparing students into industry 4.0 in line with the Program Educational Objective, which is to produce technologist, technopreneur and entrepreneurship.
As such, the success ratio of higher graduate employability is ensured as the students will have a structured WBL courses in the industry itself within a year before they graduate,” he said.
He said another delivery approach via apprenticeship is still in the development progress. The idea is to have workers upgrade their qualifications by studying two days in university and working three days.
UMP Center for Academic Innovation & Competitiveness (CAIC) director Associate Professor Dr Mohd Rusllim Mohamed, who is a director of the MBOT Technology and Technical Accreditation Secretariat, observed that MoE and the Ministry of Human Resources have been working closely to ensure the programmes are running accordingly.
“So far, the government has distributed some budget for reskilling and upskilling of existing lecturers, mentoring training for industry workers, and the implementation of a newly developed concept of teaching factory — University Revaluation Teaching Factory (URTF). Here, students are involved in industry production line, thus creating valuable experiential learning even before they graduate,” he said.
He related that MoE has approached the Malaysian German Chamber of Commerce and Industries (MGCCI) to become a strategic partner to BTech’s MTUN, so that the programmes can be further improved to meet the German standards.
“With MGCCI on board, all of its over 400 companies’ partners would be willing to be part of the ministry’s TVET empowerment agenda,” he said.
To improve the quality of teaching and learning based on IR 4.0, Anuar said UniMAP is currently applying to develop a teaching plant through the URTF effort.
“This involves practical sessions of industrial design, engineering design and 3D printing at this teaching plant,” said Anuar.
UniMAP’s Faculty of Engineering Technology has also applied for TVET transfer of technology (TOT) for existing lecturers to further enhance their knowledge and skills.
“The main objective of this TOT is to obtain professional certification for lecturers at the faculty. Some laboratories are also proposed to be turned into industrial laboratories, to enable professional certificates to be issued. Training to obtain a teaching professional certificate has also been proposed as one of the TOT TVET agendas to be implemented after this provision is approved,” he said.
At UTHM, Wahid said nine memoranda of understanding and eight letters of intent with related industries have been signed.
“The University-Industry partnerships include those with Siemens, Acson, Carrier, Festo, HardRock Hotel, NIOSH, Binaan Desjaya and Proton. The approach of BTech programmes is to have 60 per cent work-based learning and 40 per cent theory,” he said.
Director of UTeM’s Academic Planning and Development Office Associate Professor Dr Muhammad Fahmi Miskon said with a BTech degree in hand, TVET graduates can also request for appropriate and adequate amount of salaries coherent with the skills that they own.
“It is believed that the competition for fresh graduates to get a job has gotten tougher. Hands-on skills, experience and knowledge are what employers look for today,” he said.
Other than having more students involved in skilled courses, Ahmad Zaidee said it is also very important to get the students to further their studies so that they would be more intellectually improved in many aspects.
“The graduates of these programmes are expected to be employed as soon as they graduate because the programmes are designed to fulfil the needs of the industries.
“The launch of B.Tech programmes in MTUN reflects the government’s commitment in promoting and acknowledging TVET as the driving force in the country’s development. The curriculum is more practical and flexible to meet the challenges of the IR 4.0,” he said.
As the primary professional body for TVET, he said MBOT prepares TVET graduates as technologists and technicians that are readily accepted not just in the local but also the global industry.
“We are establishing our footing in the international arena with other countries via bilateral or multilateral cooperation.
“To date, we have been accepted as provisional signatory for Seoul Accord (multilateral co-accreditation agreement for Information & Computing Technology programmes). MBOT has also taken a proactive step in proposing to pioneer the establishment of APEC Technologists and Technicians Register (ATTR) which is anticipated to be launched next year when Malaysia hosts APEC 2020,” he said.
Comment: It’s not just BTech that DVM/DKM/DLKM graduates can pursue, they can also consider EBIM (Executive Bachelor in Industrial Management), an URise bridging program by Universiti Tun Abdul Razak where Technical Leadership and Industrial Revolution 4.0 are the core learning outcomes.
Executive Bachelor in Industrial Management (EBIM), specializing in Leadership, enable skilled personnel to excel into managerial positions with enhancements in managerial core abilities. The course covers the learning in soft-skills of leadership, managerial abilities, business communication and project management.
For SKM1&2 graduates, they are also not forgotten as their pathway would be to Professional Diploma in Industrial Management.
Truly understanding TVET candidates’ situation, SPM is not a pre-requisite, yay! Another exciting part about the program is that it’s a blended learning, means it’s conducted online and face to face classroom.
For more information, kindly email to firstname.lastname@example.org or whatsapp/call 012-3123430.
PUTRAJAYA, Oct 24 — The Youth and Sports Ministry today exchanged Statements of Understandings with five entities aimed at forging stronger cooperation between the public and private sectors in developing the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) industry.
Witnessed by Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman, the statements would see the entities play an active role in increasing career opportunities within the sector by offering spots for education and training, while offering technical advice to the ministry.
Among the signatories were Volvo Malaysia Sdn Bhd, Sapura Secured Technologies Companies, Malaysia Industry Association, the Malaysian Resources Corporation Berhad, with the cooperation of the Malaysian Prison Department.
Syed Saddiq later stressed the importance of offering former juveniles and minor crime offenders a second chance to reassimilate into society, saying one solution would be to retrain and up-skill them in opportunities within the TVET industry.
“For those who have been categorised as Individuals Under Observation, Henry Gurney leavers, we will give them a special route for them to be trained so in the end, despite them having a record, but they would be trained, re-skilled and up-skilled.
Henry Gurney Schools were set up under the Juvenile Courts Act 1947 to care for young offenders and provide formal education and rehabilitation for juvenile inmates.
“In the end they are able to be placed in companies that we share a relationship with for the TVET program,” he said after launching the SKIL 19’ Skills Symposium at the Youth and Sports Ministry Podium hall this morning.
Syed Saddiq said this and other efforts would be part of his ministry’s two pronged program, MyFuture Youth and MyFuture Youth Plus, aimed at offering reactive programs for former offenders, and proactive programs for youth who are classified within the risky category.
“For those who are in danger of falling into the group of high risk youths, we will put them through an early intervention program with special routes into TVET programmes.
“There will be long and short courses, and in the end they will be offered a job,” he explained.
He also mentioned the importance of the government’s willingness to accept former offenders into the public service, saying such steps have been brought to the attention of the Cabinet.
The Muar MP also revealed amendments to public service requirements are currently being worked out by the Chief Secretary that will see a leeway be added to consider former offenders to enter the civil service.
“This is important because if we see for those who have been jailed before, and those from Henry Gurney, about 50 to 60 per cent are youth, and a majority of them have committed minor crimes.
“But, because they don’t have targeted assistance, and if we forget or sideline them, they will go back into the community and society where their family also does not take them seriously, and not have a job, no direction in their life.
“If we (the government) are also not willing to help out, in the end they will reoffend and reenter into the same system,” he said.
Syed Saddiq stressed on the importance of breaking their cycle of crime and to offer them a second chance to assimilate back into and be a useful member of a developing society.
Additionally, the minister also added how the negative and derogatory perception towards the TVET industry should stop, and instead instil the culture of treating them as equals on par with graduates from public universities.
“If we see in Germany, the youth there are educated from a young age to understand that TVET is on par with those from public universities.
“In Malaysia, we have to instil this culture into the hearts and minds of the youth, and also the parents, as this is important to ensure that TVET will always be one of the most important growth sectors in the new Malaysia.
“But realising that dream would be impossible without the close cooperation between industry players,” he added.
1. Most of the those that took up TVET courses are because they are academically poor & have no where to go (minority do have good academic grades too) 2. TVET jobs are generally low paying, especially in the initial years. However, with recognised certification, experience & good communication + people skills, income can reach 5 figures, eg like chefs, underwater welder, piping expert (O&G industry) or operating own business like dressmaking, hairdressing & beauty salon, automotive workshops. 3. Lack of coordination between TVET institutions and industry on industrial needs also produced mismatch skills of TVET graduates, hence lower pay.
Helping skilled workers secure certification will boost their chances of getting a better salary throughout their career.
Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) executive director Datuk Shamsuddin Bardan said youths working in the technical and vocational field should not worry about their starting pay as it would be reviewed over time and upon the confirmation of their job.
“The rate of review can be between RM100 and RM500, usually after six months.”
“Malaysia practises a seniority-based wage system with yearly increment. Some developed countries adopted a rate for job payscale. They are paid based on their skills, regardless of seniority,” Shamsuddin said.
He said in Malaysia, employees had honed their skills through work exposure and experience, but even after 15 to 20 years of service, they did not get themselves certified, hence their stagnant wages.
He said this would open workers to exploitation by companies.
“Getting certification would be beneficial for them if they want to quit their job and work at another company.”
“However, there are now electronic fuel injection engines, hybrid cars and electric cars in the market.”
Because of this, he said, institutions needed to upgrade their equipment and teaching methods by working with the private sector.
He added that in the long run, there was a need to look at the whole situation and advocate a skills-based service system, where the skills that employees had would be evaluated by encouraging them to get a certification.
“Their employees’ pay should be based on their skill-level on top of observing the minimum wage,” he said.
Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers chief executive officer Dr Yeoh Oon Tean said it was important that TVET students enrolled for courses that led to a recognised certification of their skills and offered them a pathway to upgrade themselves in terms of wages and standard of living.
He said the issue faced by employers was a lack of coordination between TVET institutions and industry on industrial needs.
“A wide variation in (education) standards may lead to the continuity of poor public perception of TVET education.
There is a need for a streamlined qualification system that ensures a minimum standard is met and strengthens the confidence of employers and TVET students.”
He said initiatives taken by the TVET Empowerment Cabinet Committee were a positive way to address issues.
Among the initiatives include the establishment of a coordinating and enforcement agency to address the issue of fragmentation of TVET implementation, which cuts across ministries.
“The agency would ensure standardisation of training and qualifications, quality assurance, qualification portability, recognition of prior learning and greater cost effectiveness in the use of resources. It should uplift the status of TVET graduates as skilled craftsman to promote it.”
He said other initiatives could ensure greater industry collaborations in TVET by strengthening public-private partnerships to improve employability and produce industry-ready graduates.
“Industries need to engage in more apprenticeship, internship and work-based learning programmes to prepare students for the working environment. It needs to start early to prevent skills mismatch.”
Yeoh said as long as there was no uniformity in standards and quality, the industry could not be forced to follow a wage guide, which would be determined by the highest level of standards and quality of a qualification.
He said there was a need to address the public’s opinion of the TVET field being less prestigious than a professional qualification.
The ways to do this, Yeoh said, included introducing TVET into the school curriculum as early as primary level; promoting it as a mainstream education rather than for less academically-inclined students, and having trainers with industrial and operational experience.
Watch the video at Astro Awani‘s FB Page on Shared Prosperity Vision
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the move was important to “upskill” the people to be more capable and efficient, and be able to do more “sophisticated work”. – NSTP/MOHD FADLI HAMZAH
PUTRAJAYA: The government will place priority on technical and vocational education and training (TVET), in efforts to increase the people’s income, under the Shared Prosperity Vision.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the move was important to “upskill” the people to be more capable and efficient, and be able to do more “sophisticated work”.
“The income gap between the rich and poor is too wide so we need to increase the people’s income.
“But we don’t want to do this by just increasing wages but (we want) to improve their capacity so that they are more productive, and give them training so that they are more capable and efficient.
“For example, we are already in the aerospace industry, and even some parts of airplane engines assembly are being done in Malaysia.” he said this after chairing a special cabinet meeting on the Shared Prosperity Vision here, yesterday.
Dr Mahathir said the cabinet has agreed that TVET played an important role in improving the skills of workers and that training must be made a priority.
“Our (2020) Budget would prioritise such areas. If there is not enough money for all, we would have to lessen the budget for other areas with lesser priority,” he added.
Dr Mahathir said the government would also give focus to poorer states, reducing wealth disparities from richer states.
He listed Kelantan, Perlis and Kedah as among the three poorest states in Malaysia.
“Another gap is between the urban and rural areas, where those living in urban areas are richer than those staying in the rural areas.
“So a programme must be created to increase the income of those living in the rural areas,” Dr Mahathir added.
In explaining further, Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali said the government would apply the spirit of shared prosperity in the 2020 Budget, and prioritise sectors such as TVET and skills training.
“This will be given consideration by the Finance Ministry to be refined in the 2020 Budget.”
The Shared Prosperity Vision was announced by Dr Mahathir at the tabling of the mid-term review of the 11th Malaysia Plan in October 2018 in Parliament.
Its framework was also explained by the prime minister in his May 9 speech earlier this year in conjunction with Pakatan Harapan’s one year in government.
The Shared Prosperity Vision will encompass the 12th and 13th Malaysia Plans, spanning 10 years from 2021 to 2031.
Comment: Not sure how the government is going to prioritise the TVET sector. As Tun M mentioned that if budget is insufficient for all, then it has to be channeled to the priority sectors. So I would assume that more funds are to be allocated to the sector, such as more funds to PTPK to loan students, especially from the B40, which are mainly from rural areas & also the urban poor. Hopefully this would then enhance this group’s earning capability and reduce the income gap. For the benefit/knowledge of those outside TVET industry, insufficient PTPK loan in the past 1-2 years has caused many students (esp B40 group) that is interested to pursue TVET courses unable to continue their studies at private & government TVET institutions. This has an economic & social impact:
1. Economic Effect on TVET institutions – With the limited quota provided to TVET institutions, especially the private ones, many has folded up or ready for sale as they couldn’t sustain the business due to over-reliance on loan to recruit students.
Effect on TVET trainers & supporting staffs – These trainers who have SKM in their field and Vocational Training Operation (especially those that do not have industry experience but fresh from TVET institutions like CIAST) would probably be now jobless or work in non-related field that pays them nothing more than a SPM school leaver’s qualification.
Effect on students – As the students who may not even have SPM or poor SPM results, they have no where to upgrade themselves or learn a skills to uplift their economic livelihood.
2. Social Since the students are not able to further their studies, they may have high probability of being unemployed or worse still, involved in petty crimes, become Mat Rempit, drug addicts, gangsterism and other illegal activities.
Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government believed that the cooperation would create a new breed of specialist workforce in learning the latest technology that has a spillover effect that would be able to boost economic growth and development of technology in other sectors such as agriculture, construction, health and services.
“The government believes the agenda to empower TVET with the cooperation from the industry players should be the national TVET strategic goals.
“A smart partnership between the industry and TVET institutions will help in the production of quality products and more efficient services,” he said in his keynote address at the TVET Convention here today.
To achieve that, Dr Mahathir called on more industry players to play a more active role in developing the country’s human capital and supporting the national TVET policy, especially by recognising the skills of TVET graduates and sharing their expertise with them.
Dr Mahathir said TVET programmes which involved a joint venture between public TVET institution and multinational company and based on industry needs and requirements, had proven successful with almost 90 per cent of the graduates being able to secure jobs upon graduation.
“That is why public and private TVET industry players should get out of their comfort zones and find more effective solutions.
“One of the approaches is definitely through inter-stakeholder collaboration, especially with the industry,” he said.
The prime minister said TVET would be the game-changer in the government’s efforts to produce highly-skilled local workforce, hence reducing dependency on foreign workers.
He said the government would also strive to enhance Malaysian youth capability in TVET to enable the demands of the high-tech industry to be met by the local workforce.
“This is why the partnership with private TVET institutions is important. In order to produce a bigger percentage of skilled workers, it is vital for both private and public TVET institutions to work closely with us.
“Though TVET focuses on the technical, electronic, electrical, civil engineering, ICT, but we will diversify to hospitality courses soon, because it is a platform that nurtures the interest of the youth.
“In the long term, we want graduates to become entrepreneurs, where they can apply for funding from the skilled development corporate fund when they have undergone the programmes and obtained a certificate,“ he said.
“We have 32 institutions under the Manpower Department – the industrial training institutes, the Japan Technical Institute in Penang, and advanced technologies centres, which besides running full-time courses, also organise short courses to cater for working adults. Our institutions are open to 11pm.”
Muhd Khair said TVET graduates are equally competent as compared with other graduates from various colleges and universities.
Kulasegaran (centre) witnessing the exchange of documents between Lim (in dark jacket) and Muhd Khair at the Ann Joo company plant in Prai, Penang.
THE technical and vocational education training (TVET) should be the first choice among the students to further their studies as the days of the academic studies are over, said Human Resources Minister M. Kulasegaran.
“Let us take the worst scenario. Ten years ago, parents sent their children to study medicine and now, quite a number are found to be jobless for nearly two years.
“Whereas, students who graduated with TVET are met with jobs waiting for them at the door step.
“These students will be easily absorbed anyway, as the job opportunities and wages are better after completing their studies,” he said.
Kulasegaran said parents were starting to realise that studies in skills fields had more potential unlike academic studies, as the demand for skilled jobs were high and jobs were available instantly upon competition of the courses.
“You would be surprised that many of the TVET students are working in the Middle-East and Singapore, earning lucrative salaries of between RM30,000 and RM50,000 per month based on their skills.
“We are also in the process of discussion with Japan to have tie-ups between their TVET universities and Malaysian colleges.”
Kulasegaran was speaking to reporters after witnessing the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Manpower Department (JTM) and Yayasan Jasa Ann Joo.
JTM was represented by its director-general Datuk Muhd Khair Razman Mohamed Annuar while Yayasan Jasa Ann Joo was represented by Ann Joo Group executive director Datuk Lawrence Lim Aun Chuan.
The signing ceremony was held at the Ann Joo Steel Berhad, Prai last Thursday.
Kulasegaran said among the key areas of cooperation in the MoU were apprenticeship opportunities and scholarships for TVET students at 32 TVET institutions under JTM, including temporary placements or industry attachment.
He said forging partnerships between public TVET institutions and the industries were pivotal for the development of TVET in the country to enable graduates to meet the needs and demand of the industry and to have first-hand working experiences.
Lim said through Yayasan Jasa Ann Joo, scholarships would be offered to qualified students of the Manpower Department Training Institution (ILJTM), and job opportunities would be offered to them upon completing their studies.
“We have not finalised how many students will be offered the scholarships, as we are in the midst of identifying them,” he added.
Meanwhile, Kulasegaran urged more local companies to emulate the efforts by Ann Joo Steel Berhad and Yayasan Jasa Ann Joo in establishing partnerships with TVET training providers, especially among the local small-and-medium enterprises.
He also praised Ann Joo for employing 85% local workers and had given priority to hire local talents.
Comment: Besides the steel industry, there are currently 2 big chains that are looking for TVET graduates in the respective fields:
1. Retail 2. Service industry – restaurants (Stewarding Operations, F&B etc)
If you think you qualify, kindly email your resume to email@example.com