Stakeholders hail NCHE for successfully coordinating the Skills Development Project (SDP)
Stakeholders at the recent Skills Development Project (SDP) dissemination conference have hailed the National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) for successfully coordinating the project.
SDP was a five - year World Bank funded project which is ending this December implemented by five participating institutions of Polytechnic, Chancellor College, Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR), Mzuzu University and the Technical Entrepreneurial Vocational Education and Training Authority (TEVETA).
The dissemination conference was held recently at the Polytechnic in Blantyre in the School of Engineering building constructed under the project.
The aim of the conference was to share with stakeholders in the higher education sector as well as the industry what the project has achieved since its inception past five years ago.
Speaking at the conference, Minister of Education, Science and Technology Dr. William Susuwele Banda who was the guest of honour, hailed NCHE for successfully coordinating the project which has seen tremendous outputs in uplifting standards of higher education in the country.
“Higher Education is an important investment in the future of an individual and the country, for individuals it opens doors to better paying jobs, provides opportunities and expands career choices.”
“Higher education graduates are the strongest contributors to the tax revenues that sustain the key programs and social services provided by the government,” said the Minister.
Speaking at the function, NCHE Chef Executive Officer Dr. Ignasio Malizani Jimu said as NCHE they were proud to have been coordinating the project.
“6th December shall be remembered by all the participating institutions, and the National Council for Higher Education as the day we gathered together to showcase the achievements under the Skills Development Project,” stated Dr Jimu. “We are glad that the government entrusted to the Council the responsibility to coordinate the Project, which in our own judgement has been performed well” he said.
World Bank Education Practice Manager for Eastern and Southern Africa, Safaa El Tayeb El-Kogali, said it was essential that government and stakeholders in Malawi scale up investment in human capital to ensure that Malawians realise their full productivity potential and promote economic growth.
Among others, the project has seen construction and rehabilitation of teaching and learning infrastructure including laboratories, lecture theaters, classrooms, as well as the development of new curricula in the five participating institutions and staff development.
One of the beneficiaries of the project, Chancellor College fourth year student Cecilia Phiri saying now their learning will be facilitated with the state of the art equipment and facilities in the magnificent Brown Chimphamba Laboratories, constructed at the College among others.
The 50 million US Dollars project was aimed at increasing access, market relevance and results orientation of supported skills development institutions.
Stakeholders at the dissemination workshop included those from the higher education sector as well as from the industry.