Saturday, February 17, 2018

Petrotrin to launch school for employees


‘EXPAND AND UPGRADE’: University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT) project manager Prem Nandlal, second from right, fields questions from President Anthony Carmona, centre, and Tertiary Education Minister Fazal Karim during their tour of the reactor room at UTT’s Point Lisas Energy Campus, Esperanza Road, Brechin Castle, Couva yesterday. —Photo: TREVOR WATSON

Mark Fraser

STATE-owned Petrotrin will soon launch a school for its employees at its Pointe-a-Pierre location, according to Minister of Science, Technology and Skills Training, Fazal Karim.

 Karim said the school will follow the model used by Brazilian firm OAS Construtora to educate its workers and assist in enhancing their skills.

Last year, the OAS Worker Productivity School was opened at OAS’s construction site at Golconda. It was the first of its kind in the country.

Karim made the announcement yesterday during the media launch of the University of Trinidad and Tobago’s (UTT) tenth anniversary celebrations held at UTT’s Point Lisas campus.

Elaborating on the school that will be called the UTT-Petrotrin Worker School, UTT president Prof Dyer Narinesingh said: “Upgrading the skills of workers in their own work environment now shows that the learning process is enhanced  when there are multiple learning environments incorporated in the learning architecture. Merging the environment with the classroom will be a UTT imperative. Other such UTT worker schools will be set up across the country over the coming years.” 

He also said by the end of next year, 60 per cent of  secondary school graduates will be entering tertiary level institutions.

For this reason, those institutions must be expanded and systems upgraded to accommodate those persons, he added.

And more emphasis was needed on developing entrepreneurs, he said.

Narinesingh  said: “UTT will be focusing on producing graduates with the necessary skill sets to go out and create jobs, not seek jobs. Current statistics indicate that about 60 per cent of graduates from the tertiary sector  are employed by the public sector, 30 per cent by the private sector and less than one per cent go out and create businesses within the first two years of graduation. UTT’s mission is to reverse this.”

UTT will also be launching an initiative called LearnTT, a brainchild of Karim to educate persons of all ages, starting first with Mathematics. 

Narinesingh said Mathematics was a subject area many people fail and in order to grow economically and technologically, focus must be placed on Mathematics and Physics.

Various forms of media will be used for LearnTT, he said.

And he said UTT planned to launch  the Aviation Institute of Trinidad and Tobago later this year, establish an Institute of Finance “with a difference concentrating on professional training in BPOs (business process outsourcing),” Institute of Printing and Packaging and open the Tamana Signature Building that was expected to be completed in February 2015.