Monrovia — The Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Ministry of Education, have welcomed Fourteen (14) Liberian teachers back in the country from Zambia following an 18-months of intensive training in automotive, machining, and electricity, as part of an effort to strengthen Liberia’s Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET).
The 14 returnees’ instructors were trained at the Mopani Centre Training Centre (MCTC) in Zambia. They are part of the third batch of Liberian TVET instructors to have completed TVET Studies abroad as part of the Youth Rising Project funded by the European Union and the Swedish Government and implemented by UNIDO.
Assistant Minister for TVET at the Ministry of Education, Saku S. Dukuly, who spoke during the welcome ceremony, expressed delight to witness yet again another occasion of welcoming Liberian TVET teachers, who have returned from study abroad.
“So, we are happy to receive you all, and that’s while we are here to officially welcome this group back, and this is not just a group that we are welcoming. We did this before, and this group is the third if I am not mistaken.” Dukuly said. “First were the metal and fabrication teachers that came back, the carpentry teachers, and today we are having those that are in machining, automotive, and electricity here today. So, we are happy to be here to receive you all.
Now, my words to you all are that you have a responsibility to your nation. To build this nation, it depends on you all.”
He urged the new TVET instructors that with the caliber of people they are and the skills acquired, they need to take the lead to help others become like them and ensure that they develop Liberia together.
According to Dukuly, this is a journey that started some years ago, but it was in 2014 that the European Union, under their Educational Development Fund, decided to make a contribution to TVET in Liberia to be able to transform the TVET sector.
He further used the occasion to acknowledge the EU for its support and UNIDO as the implementing partner for the job well done.
Dukuly indicated that once the young people have the requisite knowledge, skill set, and attitude in this area, they will be able to transform the country because Liberia has the resources to do so.
Presenting the instructors to the government through the MOE and MoYS, Anthony Nimely, UNIDO Deputy Project Manager for Youth Rising, declared that his institution is glad to be part of this process of transforming Liberia’s TVET sub-sector.
The goal of the TVET program in Liberia, according to Nimely, is for beneficiaries to be able to integrate into the labor market or develop their own jobs.
“So are happy to present to you 14 teachers. Of that number, eight (8) are from the automotive section, three (3) from machining, and three (3) from electrical, of whom one (1) is female.” He explained. So, ladies and gentlemen, I am pleased to present that these teachers have been away for a period of 14 months at the Mopani Centre Training Centre (MCTC), situated in Zambia, West Africa.”
Nimely said told the gathering that after the long journey, they are back in the country to be able to contribute to the development of employable skills for our young people as they contribute towards nation-building.
He lauded the MoYS and Education for the task entrusted them with to prepare these young people for the different trades that are outlined.
“So, thank you for a job well done. Now that you have come, it is good to be reminded that you have a responsibility, as you had been told. Part of your delivery is not just to lay hands on things and make them work, but to demonstrate the right attitude, and that will be inspiring and motivating for the young people that will come after you so they, too, can be able to walk in your footsteps. Let’s remember that as one group leaves the stage, another group definitely has to come on,” Nimely reminded the instructors.
For his part, the Chairperson of the project steering committee and Assistant Minister for TVET at the MoYS, Millias Z. Sheriff, who received the instructors on behalf of the government, praised the EU and the Swedish government for the degree of TVET assistance provided to the government. He stated that once the Youth Rising initiative is completed, it will help thousands of young people who will be motivated to enroll and improve their individual abilities for the betterment of Liberia.
“Your 18 months were somehow very much engaging. You did not only prove that you were a student but rather an ambassador of Liberia and that ambassadorial role played to allow yourself to be successful and to project the positive image of this country,” he said.
In remarks, the Minister of Education, Hon. D. Ansu Sonii, lauded President Weah and his partners for their support of the education and youthful sector of Liberia geared towards developing the minds of young Liberians in all spectrums of the country.
He said the returned instructors, who are 14 in number, including one female, will take up assignments to various TVET institutions around the country as per the agreement of the study to train or pass on the acquired knowledge or and provide high-quality, demand-driven technical education for young people to become employable in society.