HCM City vocational colleges thrive

December 8, 2009

While most vocational training schools in the country are struggling to reach their enrolment targets, many in HCM City have seen an increase . . .

Students in the Electromechanics Department of the HCM City Vocational College carry out an experiment with compressed air.

Duong Minh Kien, rector of Quang Trung Vocational Training School, said the overall student numbers had increased this year by 66 per cent. He said 300 students had graduated from secondary school (12 to 15 year olds), an increase of 23 per cent against last year, while 122 had enrolled after graduating from high school (16 to 18 year olds).

Meanwhile, the city’s Vocational Training College said no high school students had succeeded in winning places. Instead, all of its 520 students had graduated from secondary school.

Phu Lam Economic and Technology College has ranked first in the city in terms of student numbers for many years. This year, it enrolled nearly 1,100 students for vocational training courses.

This is the fourth year the education and training sector has analysed enrolment figures for secondary and high school students.

Statistics from the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) show that Viet Nam has on average more than 400,000 students graduating from secondary school each year who fail to go to high school.

“If we add up the number of high school students who leave education, it is alarming. This is a big waste of intelligence, money and time, and creates social issues,” said Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Education and Training Nguyen Thien Nhan at a recent on-line conference.

Meanwhile, Hoang Ngoc Vinh, head of vocational education department at MOET, said if students shunned vocational training, they would suffer financially.

In the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta region, the percentage of secondary school students attending vocational training courses was just 3.6 per cent, while in An Giang it was 3 per cent. Meanwhile, in southern Tra Vinh Province it was just 1.1 per cent.

It was a similar story in the northern mountainous provinces, said Vinh.

“Secondary school students who go into vocational training generally do so because they have failed to get into high school,” Vinh said. “Vocational training schools have to be more active in attracting students.”

Do Kinh Thanh, head of Phu Lam College’s training department, said the school has worked with local authorities to promote vocational training. He said students were also given job guidance at the beginning of each school year.

“We regularly contact high schools and secondary schools to promote our vocational training courses,” Kien said.

Vinh said the most successful vocational schools were those that ran courses tied to business demands.

Thang Long Technical College is one of the first schools to have introduced subjects such as Japanese tailored to meet the needs of firms from Japan.

Le Trinh, head of the college’s administrative department, said this year Nissan Viet Nam had asked them to train 400 technicians. In addition – together with Toshiba, Nikken and Avasys Viet Nam – it was looking to recruit post-graduates.

Nguyen Thu Mien, an accountant at Red River Corporation in Da Nang, said she studied at the city’s vocational college.

“That helped me find a job at the company. I have also been attending a part-time training course at Da Nang University. Even though I didn’t pass my university entrance exam, I now have a job,” Mien said.

VietNamNet/Viet Nam News

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