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Villanueva: Use social media to push tech-voc

QUEZON CITY, Philippines – As among the most sociable in the world, Filipinos, especially the youth, can harness the use of social media in promoting technical vocational education, Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) Director General Joel Villanueva said.
Villanueva said tech-voc graduates who are fanatics of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube and other social media sites can also make use of these platforms to market their skills and connect to potential employers.
He cited the graduates who joined the TESDA Video Making Contest Year 2 as among those who have taken to the social media in sharing their success stories to inspire others.
The entries came in the form of dramatization, storytelling, music video and other creative format and were uploaded in Youtube and Facebook. The winners for the individual category and the school category for the Best in Story, Best in Video, People’s Choice Award and the Tatak TESDA Grand Winner were awarded last May 12.
“Social media sites offer a creative and meaningful way to connect with a huge audience, including potential employers,” Villanueva said.
“By now, the stories of hundreds of our tech-voc graduates who took part in the TESDA video contest have already been viewed by thousands. Opportunities may just come knocking one of these days,” he added.
The school category winners were dominated by the Westmin Institute of Technology Inc., Region IX and graduate Celso Pobadora Jr. (Automotive Servicing NC II) who bagged the grand prize and the best in story awards.
The best in video award went to the East and West Center for Excellence in Training Corp., Region IV-A and graduate Rodalyn Pumupula (Finishing Course for Call Center Agent). The people’s choice award was received by the United Christian Academy College of Asia, NCR and graduate Imee Gorobat (Bookkeeping NC III).
Born to a family of farmers, Pobadora started working at a young age to help augment the family income. An accident left him crippled and unable to continue schooling. After his recovery, he started helping in the machine works of a shop in their community, and found his calling. He enrolled in a tech-voc course and finished as a certified mechanic. He is now assistant trainor at the Westmin Institute of Technology, Inc.
Pumupula worked abroad, but returned to the country after being maltreated by her employer. Unable to find a job, she enrolled in a Finishing Course for Call Center Agent at the East and West Center for Excellence in Training Corp. and was immediately hired as trainer and supervisor. She now oversees several branches of the training center.
Despite having an associate degree, Gorobat found it hard to get a permanent job. When she heard about a tech-voc course in Bookkeeping at the United Christian Academy College of Asia, she enrolled and completed it. She now works in an accounting firm.
Renji Arcilla of Region IV-A (Ubeda Manpower Training Center, Inc) was adjudged the best in story, and Geraldine Dorado of Region III was awarded for having the best video entry in the individual category.
Santos was discouraged by family and friends from pursuing a tech-voc course, but she enrolled in Visual Graphic Design NC III and became a certified graduate. Now, she is engaging in projects that allow her to practice her graphic design skills. She is also a trainor to budding artists in a tech-voc institution.
A college education was elusive to Arcilla, who comes from a family of 11 siblings. But when he chances upon an announcement that free tech-voc education is being offered in their community, he enrolled and got a certificate in Pipefitting NC III. Now, Arcilla not only makes a living as a pipefitter, but also as a trainer to the youth.
A mother to three children, Dorado needed a job to sustain her family, but could not find one. When she learned about the TESDA courses in their community she enrolled in Bread and Pastry production and got a certificate. From being a helper in a bakery, she now tends her own bakeshop, with the help of her kids.
“These graduates are proof of positive change because of tech-voc,” Villanueva said.
“Because of quality and relevant training, better opportunities now await them. The future is no longer uncertain for them,” he added.
The awarding ceremony was held last May 12 at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC). It was hosted by television actress Pauleen Luna and Maximo Closa, a tech-voc graduate and TESDA-certified event organizer who was among last year’s winners in the TESDA video contest.
The top video entries were evaluated by prestigious personalities who served as judges: Eugenio Villareal, chairman of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB); Herman Basbano, president of the Kapisanan ng mga Broadkaster ng Pilipinas; Ramon “Bong” Osorio, vice president and head of corporate communications of ASB-CBN network; Francis Cardona, chief operating officer of Radio Corporation of the Philippines; Dante Velasco, former undersecretary of the Department of Transportation and Communications; Rachelle Villanueva-Munji from the Las Pinas City government; and, Rosauro “Uro” Dela Cruz, film writer and director.
The entries to the TESDA video making contest may be accessed at the agency’s website: and Facebook account TESDA official.

Criselda Cabangon David, a happy mother of two kids, is a full-time Sociologist at the City Government of Lucena, Quezon Province. She is currently the Managing Editor of Ang Diaryo Natin Sunday News, a weekly local community newspaper in the Philippines and an active member of the National Union of Journalists of the Philippines.