Vocational Education And Training For Pakistan Students
Pakistan is facing a shortage of manpower in technical and vocational education as only 255,636 students are enrolled in 3,125 different vocational education and training institutes’ set-up across the country. According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) report, Pakistan presently had 64 technicians per one million population, while the same figure for the technically advanced countries was in the range of 1,500 to 2,500.
National Science Technology and Innovation (ST & I) Policy 2012 had earlier mentioned that despite the establishment of Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority (TEVTA) in Punjab and National Vocational and Technical Training Commission (NAVTEC) at the centre, the national requirement of technically trained personnel could not be adequately met. Talking to APP, Pakistan Council of Science and Technology (PCST) Chairman Dr Mudassar Asrar said the recent initiative launched by NAVTEC regarding crash programmes was a step in the right direction, adding it needed to be pursued more vigorously with increased outreach.
He said that technical programmes should be enhanced manifold in order to meet the national requirement, as well as preparing trained manpower for employment abroad. The successful example of the Pak-Swiss Training Centre of Pakistan Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (PCSIR) was a good example of demand driven skill development.
The PCST chairman said if combined with a formal apprenticeship program in the local industrial sector, the mentioned initiative would help to overcome the problem of non-availability of technically competent manpower. PCST was also providing funds for purchase of less expensive spare parts as compared to other laboratories in the country, he added.
“It turned out to be a useful exercise, because in most cases very high quality equipment was lying idle because of replacement of minor components,” he concluded.