More women need to take on technical and vocational jobs to close the gender disparity gap in the sector.
The remarks were made by the State Minister for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET), Albert Nsengiyumva, while officiating at the fourth graduation ceremony of the Integrated Polytechnic Regional Center (IPRC) in Kigali yesterday.
The event saw over 485 students graduate with advanced diplomas after a three-year course in fields like information technology, civil, mechanical, and electrical engineering.
“Women dominate the parliament, and various other spheres of governance in this country, we should also see the same in this field,” he said.
Nsengiyumva added that equipping of more citizens with TVET skills would reduce reliance on foreign staff when it comes to running of huge infrastructural projects in the country.
He also challenged the students to learn self-marketing skills, like adopting proper attitude and communication expertise.
Eng. Diogene Mulindahabi, the IPRC principal, urged the students to not only apply the skills they have acquired to transform their lives personally, but also their respective communities.
Olivier Nsabamungu, a project manager with Real contractors, a local construction company, and alumni of the school, encouraged graduands to initiate innovative projects, which could encourage government and other funding partners to invest in TVET.
“The difference with being a TVET graduate is that you do not only have chances of being recruited as an employee by firms/organisations, but also starting your own line of business is easy,” Denise Uwase, a graduate in electronics and telecommunications technology, said.
The national target is to have 60 per cent of students graduating from nine-year basic education enrolled into TVET schools by 2017, up from the current 40 per cent enrollment level.
Currently, there are 365 TVET schools countrywide.
It is hoped TVET would contribute towards creating 200,000 off-farm jobs annually by 2018 as projected in the second Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy