Jamaicans are once again being encouraged to pursue technical and vocational skills training and incorporate these into their academic qualifications.
Additionally, skilled workers who are uncertified, are being urged to formalise their proficiency by pursuing certification through the HEART/NSTA Trust.
Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Audrey Sewell, who previously served as director of Academies at HEART, although her training was in secondary education, shared that she also pursued technical and vocational studies.
Speaking with the Jamaica Information Service, Sewell shared that the experience increased her prospects.
“It broadened my horizons and helped me when I went to HEART, because I had the technical grounding. Persons should, in some way, do some form of technical and vocational training. Even if you don’t pursue it as a career, it is good to have those skills.”
Sewell, who initially served as a technical assistant at HEART before being promoted to several senior positions, said certification affirms the competencies of trained persons.
“It is what you use to market yourself and, globally, it helps you more in a competitive marketplace,” she added.
Noting that there is a significant number of persons who are technically sound, but don’t have any certification.
She said that one of the things HEART does is take individuals through a process, pointing out that they don’t have to go into a classroom.
“They look at their profiles, work with the individuals and certify them. The certification gives you an edge,” she pointed out.
The Human Employment and Resource Training /National Service Training Agency Trust (HEART/NSTA Trust), known to most Jamaicans simply as ‘HEART’, is Jamaica’s leading human capital development agency.
For over three decades, the entity has been the largest provider of technical vocational education and training in Jamaica and the Caribbean.
It has focused on practical, competency-based training which empowers trainees to transition seamlessly into real workplace settings.
– Jamaica Information Service