The Auto Mechanic Training Center run by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) and funded by Isuzu Motors Limited (IML) of Japan is continuing its mission to provide education to out-of-school youth and help them gain employment after graduation.
On May 9, 17 trainees who belong to the sixth batch that entered the program completed their course and graduated from the center. To date, there have been 117 graduates since the training center started accepting trainees in 2008. As the sixth batch of trainees graduated, the 10th batch of 18 new trainees entered.
"Every six months, we come together to witness several events that highlight the operations of the Auto Mechanic Training Center," said TESDA acting regional director Cleta Omega. "First is to welcome the new batch of scholars, Batch 10--there are 18 of them. Second is to recognize the outstanding performances of the ongoing scholars from Batches 7, 8 and 9. And third is the graduation ceremony of the 17 scholars from Batch 6."
The graduates are currently working at Isuzu Philippines Corporation (IPC), Isuzu Autoparts Manufacturing Corporation (IAMC), and various Isuzu dealerships.
However, Isuzu is not the exclusive employer which the training center graduates can work for. IPC encourages its affiliates, suppliers, bus companies, other local service shops and overseas companies to also hire the young auto technicians. One of the goals of the training center is to uplift the quality of automotive education in the Philippines for the benefit of the local car industry in general and not just Isuzu.
Aiming to be the prime source for a competent and productive workforce, the training center also seeks to develop technical-vocational trainers. The center provides competency-based training programs that address labor market needs locally and abroad, and supplies trainers in the Visayas region. World Vision, an international advocacy organization, is also one of the partners of the training center.
"With the pooled assistance of TESDA, World Vision and Isuzu, as well as the efforts of the trainees and trainers, this center is now a well-known training facility," said IML senior counselor Yoshinori Ida. Graduates of the two-year course earn TESDA's NC4 certification, which is the highest automotive servicing qualification in the Philippines. To date, there are a total of 201 trainees who have undergone or are currently undergoing NC1 to NC4 training at the center.
The training center is part of IML's "Heart and Smile" corporate social responsibility campaign. In addition to providing financial support, IML also supplies technical requirements such as training materials, program modules, practical applications and other skills enhancement tools. These requirements are important in an automotive education course.
IPC and IAMC, both representing IML, have been actively supporting the project since its launch in 2008.