IN line with Government’s thrust of bringing technical and vocational education and training closer to the people, Mutare Polytechnic has established the Chipinge Industrial Training Centre.
The establishment was made possible by the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology’s Integrated Skills Expansion Outreach Programme which seeks to ensure that marginalised youths are not left behind in skills training.
In a speech read on his behalf by his deputy, Honourable Raymond Machingura, during Mutare Polytechnic’s 32nd graduation ceremony last week on Thursday, Higher Education Minister, Professor Amon Murwira applauded the move.
Prof Murwira said the decentralisation will benefit the people of Chipinge and Chimanimani.
He said the training centre will help develop human capital that will help the country in attaining Vision 2030.
“The country must attain or even exceed an upper middle income economy by 2030, driven by knowledge and innovation.
“President Mnangagwa has called on institutions to develop start-ups, products and technology.
“Rural youths should not be left behind in this revolution so that they take part in buiding the country’s economy,” he said.
Prof Murwira said the Chipinge Industrial Training Centre is currently operating at St Kelvin’s Secondary School in Chipinge, while its own campus will be constructed at the site they were allocated by the local authority.
“We are happy that the plans for the buildings are in place and that in no time, the campus will be ready. So far, 43 students in Chipinge have completed their engineering courses and await trade testing in due course.
“520 more graduates have already graduated through this programme in Chikukwa and Ngangu in Chimanimani,” he said.
Mutare Polytechnic principal, Ms Poniso Watema said they will continue to support Government’s thrust of leaving noone and no place behind.
“Everyone must be equipped to contribute to the development and transformation of our beloved country, and that is why we established the training centre.
“We are looking forward to capping more rural students in the coming months,” said Ms Watema.
Speaking at Marymount Teachers’ College graduation ceremony the following day, Professor Murwira urged the graduates to create employment and formalise their businesses.
He said Government has availed funds for graduates who register their companies via their parent colleges.
“Government is ready to support you. Funding is already available, all you need to do is register your company, write your proposal and submit it via your parent college and I guarantee you that funding will be made available to you,” he said.
The funds are coming through the Zimbabwe Graduate Employment Creation and Development Programme (ZGECDP), which anchors Education 5.0.
“Government expects colleges to form industries and graduates to form companies that will produce goods and services for our country, and that is why Government is supporting students and graduates in starting their own companies,” said Prof Murwira.
He said the country is industrialising and modernising, adding that this can only be achieved through human capital development.
He went on to commend Marymount Teachers’ College for implementing graduate employment programmes.
Prof Murwira said this is in line with Vision 2030.
Acting principal for Marymount Teachers’ College, Mr Tauringana Simango said they are engaging former students in Chipinge to establish a model secondary boarding school.
He also challenged the new graduates to form consortia.
“Coming up with consortia is possible. We have a group of former students who were offered a piece of land to establish a private school in Chipinge.
“They were assisted by the college through the parent ministry.
“The process is already at an advanced stage, so I would like to encourage you to follow in their footsteps,” he said.
A total of 1 032 students graduated from Mutare Polytechnic, while 406 were capped at Marymount Teachers’ College.