TESDA eyes TVET innovation center in Clark Freeport Zone

The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) is planning to build a technical vocational education and training (TVET) innovation center inside the Clark Freeport Zone in Pampanga.

Last August 8, TESDA Secretary Suharto T. Mangudadatu, together with Deputy Director General Aniceto D. Bertiz III, paid a courtesy visit to Clark Development Corporation President and Executive Officer Atty. Agnes Devanadera.

During the meeting the officials discussed possible partnerships to strengthen tech-voc training in the region, and the possible establishment of the Regional TVET Innovation Center (RTIC) inside the Clark Freeport Zone.

According to Secretary Mangudadatu, the innovation center will be built with the help of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) through the Supporting Innovation in the Philippine Technical and Vocational Education and Training System (SIPTVETS) Project.

The project aims to support the modernization of the Philippine TVET system so that it can respond effectively to an increasingly globalized, technology- and knowledge-driven market. It will also further improve the quality of skilling programs, upgrade training facilities and equipment, and build the capacity of trainers for them to be able to teach the higher-level skills and competencies demanded by the job market.

“Having the RTIC inside the Clark Economic Zone will locate it strategically to serve the medium-term and future skills demands of commercial, manufacturing, and trading establishments of the CFZ, of the region, and of the country, as a whole,” the Secretary said.

Once operational, the innovation center will offer various courses in robotics, mechatronics, and smart health care, among others. It is set to provide a continuous stream of qualified workers to the more than 30,000 jobs that are projected to be created as the CFZ expands as a hub for business, industry, aviation, education and tourism.

Meanwhile, Secretary Mangudadatu shared that the construction of innovation centers nationwide is aligned with TESDA’s strategic thrusts of global competitiveness and workforce readiness, and social equity for workforce inclusion and poverty reduction.

“The implementation of innovations in TVET must be dynamic, encompassing and inclusive of the education and training, experimentation in research and development, and entrepreneurship education,” he said.

At present, there are four TESDA innovation centers located in Isabela, Cebu, Northern Samar, and Zamboanga Sibugay.