The Commission for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (CTVET) in partnership with the National Youth Authority (NYA) and the Ghana National Union of Technical Students (GNUTS) has held a virtual conference to mark this year’s World Youth Skills Day (WYSD).
The conference brought together young people, TVET institutions, employers, policy makers and development partners to discuss the need to prepare Ghana’s youth today for the jobs of tomorrow; under the theme ‘Building Youth Skills for Industry Now and Beyond’.
Speaking at the event, the Deputy Minister for Education Hon. Gifty Twum Ampofo said government has put in place policies, strategies and legal frameworks to reform and strengthen TVET systems in the country to make it attractive to the youth and responsive to labour market demands.
She pledged government’s commitment to equipping the youth with employable skills to empower them to contribute meaningfully to the sustainable development of the country and urged “all stakeholders to ensure the continuity of skills development and to introduce training programmes to bridge skills gaps.’’
“Solutions to skills gaps need to be reimagined in a way that considers not only the realities of the present, but also the full range of possibilities for the future,’’ she added.
The Ag. Director General of CTVET Dr. Fred Kyei Asamoah in his welcome address congratulated the youth of Ghana for the incredible ways they continue to cope to bounce back even stronger, in these challenging times.
During a panel discussion, Dr. Asamoah enumerated various initiatives being undertaken by the government in partnership with development partners through CTVET, to prepare the youth for now and the future. These include the Ghana TVET Voucher Project which offers free demand-oriented training to improve access to decent employment; the Jobs and Skills Project which is aimed at providing over 200,000 jobs to Ghanaian youth through skills training.
Others are the establishment of Sector Skills Bodies to ensure that industry is at the centre of skills training and the upgrading and modernization of TVET institutions to improve the quality of TVET delivery.
He said, “post COVID, things are going to be digitized, automated and technological advancement as never seen before is going to happen.” He therefore urged the youth to take advantage of technology to position themselves to be relevant in the emerging jobs economy.
The Ag. CEO of NYA Mr. Nelson Owusu Ansah reiterated the key role of TVET in ensuring decent work, employability and fostering the resilience of young people. He also encouraged the youth to seek and apply themselves to internship opportunities to aid their smooth transition to work.
“It is on the vehicle of TVET that you can really create and predict your future. With TVET, you can predict your own income at the end of the month. If we continue with our traditional system of looking for jobs after school, then we will continue to sing the song of unemployment,’’ he added.
Other panel members were Mr. Kwesi Eyison, Mr. Bright Nkutumi and Ms. Sika Mortoo, with Mr. Albert Opare as the moderator.
World Youth Skills Day is celebrated on July 15. This year’s theme was ‘Reimagining Youth Skills Post-Pandemic’, which aimed to celebrate the resilience and creativity of the youth throughout the crisis.
The day also focussed attention on how Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) systems have adapted during COVID-19, participate in the recovery, and imagine priorities needed to be adopted in post-pandemic times.