Approximately 300 youth across Jamaica are set to benefit from the Universal Service Fund (USF) Technology Advancement Programme (TAP) III Coding Course this year.
The group of youngsters, between 18 and 29, will receive technical training in computer coding as well as the necessary business skills required to succeed in the rapidly evolving industry. Classes will commence on June 12.
Speaking at TAP III’s opening ceremony and orientation on Friday (June 9), Minister of Education and Youth, Fayval Williams, said the programme represents the Government’s commitment to utilise information and communications technology (ICT) tools to boost socio-economic development.
“Our vision, through initiatives like TAP, is to create a landscape where education in science, technology and innovation becomes the bedrock supporting every sector of our nation. We are making strides in the right direction, and I assure you that our efforts to empower our young people will continue to be a top priority,” Minister Williams said.
She was delivering the keynote address at the event, which took place at the University of the West Indies Regional Headquarters in Kingston.
The minister also noted that through the initiative’s aggressive ICT strategy and the right execution, more Jamaicans will be able to achieve the same level of success as regional and global peers.
Bridging digital divide
Meanwhile, Minister of Science, Energy, Telecommunications and Transport, Daryl Vaz, emphasised that the Government remains committed to bridging Jamaica’s digital divide.
TAP has been playing and will continue to play an integral role in this endeavour, the Minister said.
“Guided by the tenets of Vision 2030, we are creating a pathway for our young people to not only access quality education but to harness these opportunities for personal and national growth, with emphasis on information and communications technology as a transformative tool for education, lifelong learning, and the empowerment of our citizens,” he added.
More than 1,600 individuals have benefited from TAP since its inception in 2017 and have moved on to joining Jamaica’s robust ICT workforce.