The Monrovia Vocational Training Center (MVTC), Liberia’s leading skills institute over the weekend graduated 2,709 students in various skills, including computer, plumbing, graphic arts, electricity, masonry, carpentry, electronic and architectural drafting.
The S.K. Doe Sports Complex in Paynesville, outside Monrovia, which served as the venue of the graduation was a place of excitements when parents, guardians, government officials and international partners gathered to celebrate the exercise.
Deputy Labor Minister for Planning and Human Resource Development, Phil Tarpeh Dixon, who served as guest speaker, called on the graduates to take advantage of the knowledge acquired and improve their living conditions.
Minister Dixon said many parents during those days did not get university or college education or have degree, but lived the best lives and supported their children’s education.
“They were not holder of PHD, master’s degrees or bachelor degrees, but in many cases, they were people with skills. So if those people lived better lives, you too having acquired vocational skills, can do the same,” Minister Dixon told the graduates.
He said in the olden days, there was a consciousness of human dignity, awareness of capabilities and respect for people in society with commitments by corporate institutions in managing their social responsibilities.
Dixon who spoke on the topic, “Ordinary Person, Key to Fulfillment of the Pro-Poor Agenda.” He called on the graduates to begin with whatever they have to achieve the bigger ones.
“Do not say my mother is not rich or my father does not have tailoring shop; nor say my brother does not work with Liberia Electricity Corporation or I don’t have contact, therefore, no job for me, but to forge ahead in your profession,” Dixon warned the graduates.
He then called on them to begin working in their various communities in the absence of employment or job that will create or improve their living conditions.
“You might forget about these valuable skills acquired if such action is not taken. Take advantage of reaching out to some of the big companies. Continues to take yourself serious and there should be no limit for you,” he told the graduates that cheered him to a round of applause.
Minister Dixon added, “truthfulness must always be with you whenever you are given a contract or employment, because the job or work should be done with neatness so that your class and generation will make a difference.”
He however assured the graduates of job security as the Labor Ministry remains focus on ensuring that the right of every employee is protected.
Youth and Sports Minister, D. Zoegar Wilson, expressed his excitement to see such a rising numbers of Liberians graduating with professional skills, which he was the first of its kind in the history of MVTC.
As a government, Minister Wilson said, “we have the responsibility to empower the youth, to gain employment, built their capacity entrepreneurship.”
He informed the graduates about the Ministry’s ongoing discussions with other government institutions and partners relative to gainful employment, entrepreneurship and capacity building for young graduates.