After the opening and commissioning of practical classrooms at four schools in the districts of Commewijne, Saramacca, Wanica and Nickerie, it was Paramaribo’s turn on Thursday 28 July 2022, where nine classrooms were put into use at LBO STS-3. (Lower Vocational Education)The official opening ceremony was performed by President Chandrikapersad Santokhi in the presence of Minister Marie Levens of Education, Science and Culture (MinOWC), Member of Assembly Ivanildo Plein, District Commissioner Paramaribo-Northeast Ricardo Bhola, Director of Vocational Education Gracia Valies-Ormskirk, Deputy Director of Vocational Education Susanna Verveer and other invited guests.
In view of the current developments in the oil and gas industry, more and more workers are needed to repair the machines, among other things. “It is therefore important that you make an effort to understand the explanations about the machines, because the demand for labor is increasing,” said Minister Levens. The minister told those present that intensive talks have been held with the business community and oil companies. It has been promised that a large center will be set up to provide specialized training. For the time being, the demand from the labor market can be met, said Minister Levens.
Time does not stand still, because more and more complicated issues arise. That is why it is important that the MinOWC responds to the demand from the labor market. With the modernization of vocational education, students can develop their competences more flexibly. Director Valies-Ormskirk emphasizes the importance and beauty of Education to the students and encouraged them to pay full attention during the learning process.
President Santokhi said that this government will invest much more in the technical fields because more technocrats are needed. He further mentioned that Caricom is open to all professions, and one can travel freely to and from these countries. The head of state emphasized that Suriname wants to work with its own graduates as much as possible. The president emphasized that with a technical study there are many career opportunities. “Take advantage of every opportunity, because there are,” said President Santokhi.
The MinOWC is currently implementing the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) project, which is funded by the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB), with the aim of improving and innovating the Lower Vocational Education (LBO).
The practical rooms are intended for Mechanical Engineering and for the practical subjects, Gawasa and Welding.