220 APTC graduates

TWO-HUNDRED-AND-TWENTY women and men were awarded with Australian-standard qualifications at the Australia-Pacific Technical College (APTC) Fiji graduation ceremony at the Novotel Suva Lami Bay convention centre yesterday.

Speaking at the event, Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations, Jone Usamate said APTC established a Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) program that focused on the development of skills of people with disabilities through consultations with industry stakeholders such as the Spinal Injury Association (SIA).

“In June this year, the Certificate II in Skills for Work and Vocational Pathways program was offered to Fijians with disabilities for the first time,” he said.

“The program aimed at developing a range of skills, including oral, written and numerical communication, as well as basic digital literacy skills to enhance their employability and productivity in the workplace. Today’s graduation ceremony features the first graduates from this program.”

Mr Usamate said APTC excelled in the past 10 years, producing more than 11,400 Pacific Island women and men graduates with Fiji contributing 4500 of these.

“Fiji has had the great privilege of contributing to the largest number of graduates for the college. This is indeed a historic achievement for APTC in the development of TVET in Fiji and the region as a whole,” he said.

He said the wide variety of programs was a great reflection of the range of skills and trades in Fiji.

APTC chief executive officer Denise O’Brien said the graduating students made sacrifices to undertake their studies at APTC.

“We know that for many, you needed to leave your place of work, your family and community for a period of time in order to undertake your studies. We thank your employers and families who have supported you through this time,” she said.

Students graduated from 20 different programs which ranged from Airconditioning and Refrigeration, Carpentry, Fashion, Hospitality and Tourism, Wall and Floor Tiling to Training Assessment and Youth Work.

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