The philanthropic arm of a Malaysian trading conglomerate aims to create more Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) opportunities for youths through a new initiative called the YSD Skill Enrichment Programme.
In line with the national aspiration to equip youths with employable skills that meet labour market demands, the programme is set to benefit 400 youths annually as compared to 35 under YSD’s previous annual allocation for TVET bursaries — with focus on assisting those from underprivileged and marginalised backgrounds.
Chairman of the firm stated that the programme will see the organisation working with four strategic partners: the Department of Polytechnic and Community College Education under the Ministry of Education (MOE), the Industrial Academy and the Healthcare College – which are owned of the firm – and the KRU Academy.
The aim is to provide more scholars with technical skills and assist with job placements upon the completion of their training courses.
Through the firm’s collaborations with its TVET partners, the fields of vocational study opportunities offered under the programme are broadened to support more Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and creative arts courses.
Currently, almost 90 per cent of TVET graduates have been able to get a job after graduation. With the support of the foundation’s TVET partners, the company intends to push the number higher.
The firm also hosted its annual Scholarship Award Ceremony with the foundation awarding over RM21 million worth of various scholarships and bursaries to 584 deserving individuals, a majority of which are from underprivileged households.
Among others, 264 vocationally inclined students received a total of RM6.61 million for the skill enrichment category to pursue diploma in engineering, diploma in architecture, diploma in quantity surveying, professional certificate in 3D animation, diploma in nursing and medical assistant under MOE’s Polytechnic and Community College Department, KRU Academy, Sime Darby Industrial Academy and Ramsay Sime Darby Healthcare College.
Under the Special Needs Bursary Programme (undergraduate and diploma bursaries for persons with disabilities), 29 recipients received more than RM1.04 million.
Empowering TVET among priorities of HR Ministry
According to another article, empowering Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) by developing a more relevant new policy in implementing TVET’s agenda in line with industry needs as part of the Ministry of Human Resources’s plan throughout 2019.
This was outlined in the Ministry of Human Resource’s 2019 achievement report to strengthen the various sectors while championing the rights of workers in the country.
With a RM5.9 billion allocation via the 2020 Budget to place TVET in the mainstream in the country, the ministry has begun to take step by establishing the TVET Single Quality Assurance System to be used by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) and the Department of Skills Development (JPK) for the purpose of coordinating, monitoring and strengthening the TVET sector.
In line with the latest trend of the Industrial Revolution (IR) 4.0 education or 4.0 era education, 35 National Occupational Skills Standards (NOSS) related to IR 4.0 were developed in 2018.
Supporting education initiatives
Recently, the Prime Minister highlighted key tertiary education initiatives during the Education Minister 2020 Mandate.
With “Realising Shared Prosperity through Education” as the focus for the Education Ministry this year, schools and tertiary institutions are emphasising on preparing human capital that is skilful, productive and effective, as well as can meet industrial demands.
The PM, who is acting education minister, had elaborated on key areas ranging from the need to develop good values, the formation of a more comprehensive law to replace the Universities and University Colleges Act (AUKU) 1971 to improve the quality of public universities, as well as raise public interest in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) programmes.
He also touched on initiatives to galvanise the synergy of the research and innovation ecosystem to enable universities to produce high-impact research and provide greater support to the private education sector to help grow the economy through the provision of quality higher education that promotes international student participation.
Overall, government’s goal is to ensure that the workforce is equipped with the skills and knowledge required to contribute to and participate in the digital economy, both at the local and international level.