MANILA, Philippines—Admitting that it was not enough to graduate “specialists,” the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) has created a jobs bridging program to help some 23,000 technical-vocational course graduates in Metro Manila find work.
Tesda Director General Joel Villanueva will lead the launch of the program called “Hanapbuhay para sa Tesda Specialista” on Tuesday at the Quezon City Hall’s covered walk.
Five more job fairs will be held in Metro Manila within the month.
“Ultimately, the success of the Tesda training programs will be gauged by how they connect skills training to jobs,” Villanueva said in a statement.
“After giving them the training, we now bring in the companies that are willing to hire them. It will just be a matter of selling themselves to their potential (employers),” he said of the graduates.
Last year, around 1.5 million students graduated from various tech-voc courses nationwide, with 190,000 of them from training institutions in Metro Manila.
Of these, only 935,230 took the Tesda assessment exam, which determines whether or not they had acquired the correct skills for their chosen courses.
Only 803,350 graduates were certified by Tesda as specialists.
Villanueva raised the problem of a jobs and skills mismatch, citing as an example the job search website www.phil-job.net that shows 230,000 jobs available against 117,000 applicants.
Villanueva said the gap between jobs and applicants showed that jobseekers lacked the skills required by companies, and training institutions were not producing graduates with those kinds of skills.
For the jobs bridging program, Tesda has partnered with local government units, the Department of Labor and Employment, the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration, Association of Technical-Vocational Schools in the National Capital Region and private companies and recruitment agencies such as Smart Philippines and the Philippine Association of Local Service Contractors.
At least 23,500 out-of-work Tesda graduates have been invited to the bridging program.
The other dates for the Tesda jobs fair are: March 18 at SM Tunasan, Muntinlupa City; March 20 at Victoria Mall, Caloocan City; March 21 at SM San Lazaro, Manila; March 22 at Cuneta Astrodome, Pasay City, and March 25 at the Pasig City Sports Center.