An estimated 2,800 prospective students have begun an 11-day orientation as part of a series of programs marking the reopening of Monrovia Vocational Training Center (MVTC) after the a two-year closure.
The orientation which began yesterday, June 13 will continue until Friday, June 24.
According to Boakai Jalebah, the orientation process will include several activities, such as a tour of the new facilities and meeting the instructors.
Mr. Jalebah is responsible for technical and vocational training-related schools across the country. He said other activities during the orientation include an indoor program, students and teachers’ interactions, team building and signing of behavior bonds by the students.
Others are distribution of MVTC uniform T-Shirts, Volunteer Community Service Day, and various recreation activities.
“Classes will formally begin on Monday, July 4,” said Min. Jaleba.
“Even though the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD) did not allow us to open MVTC in 2014, the lack of funds also played a major role in the prolonged closure of the institution,” Jaleba said.
“Currently, government has allotted US$97,000 to MVTC, but we all know it is quite impossible to run this school with that amount. Therefore, we have searched around to open the school and will continue to search in other places to continue the smooth operation of MVTC,” said Jaleba.
He said MVTC, as the largest vocational and technical school in the country, deserves the best of opportunities considering its importance. He said that the institution will not shut down again, “whether the budget helps us or not.”
MVTC Director, Wilfred Massaquoi, told the Daily Observer that this year’s cycle has been designed to manage the large numbers who have enrolled, categorizing them into two groups.
“The first category includes 892 students who completed the initial three months of common core before the eruption of Ebola. The old students will continue on the trade track after a one month refresher,” Wilfred said.
The second category, he said, will include about 1, 900 new students, who will begin the common core as a requirement to progress to the next level. The common core is a series of interrelated basic introductory courses designed to provide general program overview and to prepare students for trade
shops. Some examples of common core are basic numeracy, literacy, and ethics.
“In order to accommodate this large number of students, we have designed a new school schedule. That is, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, the instructors will concentrate on basic formal education while Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday are selected for theory and trade practical instruction.”
The decision to reopen the MVTC was finally made recently on the school campus in Paynesville following a week-long meeting that brought together Youth and Sports Minister, Charles Saah N’Tow, Deputy Minister for Administration, Dr. Nancy Freeman, and other senior staff.
Courses that will be offered will include Architectural Drafting/Auto Cad, Graphic Arts, Masonry, Plumbing, Carpentry, Computer Education and Electricity.
Others are Electronics, Refrigeration and Air-conditioning, Auto Electricity, Auto Mechanics, Heavy Duty Mechanics, Welding and Fabrications.