The Fiji National University’s (FNU) National Training and Productivity Centre (NTPC) remains firm in its commitment to provide training opportunities to all employees in Fiji.

Speaking at NTPC’s Division of Technical Training orientation recently, Deputy Director Peni Taoi said NTPC offers more than 2000 short and medium courses annually to ensure the national workforce maintains a high level of productivity.

Taoi said given the changing business dynamics, it was important for employees to attend regular up-skilling opportunities.

“At NTPC we train the workforce to fill those gaps in the industries. Having experience in the trade profession is an asset but you also must be qualified or have some formal training under your belt,” he said.

“Education is not cheap. You have enrolled into the various trade courses to learn new things and enhance your trade skills. The benefits of being in a trade field are vast. Being a specialist in a trade field is a bonus but you must continue to enhance your skills.”

Taoi said there has always been a great demand of trade specialists such as mechanics, electricians, plumbers, welders and fitters and machinists. He said the advancement in technology has created new training opportunities for students in the TVET sector.

Electrical Engineering student Adi Ama Maramanikaibau Halaiwalu said she was enjoying her studies at NTPC, Narere.

Prior to joining NTPC, Adi Ama worked as an administrative assistant with the Fijian Elections Office as an administrative assistant.

“I heard about the course from a friend and thought why not give it a try. I would like to be an aircraft’s engineer after the completion of my courses,” she said.

“Trade is an interesting field and I think more female school leavers should look towards this area. I am the only female in my class and its taking some getting used to in this male dominated environment.”

Adi Ama hails from Namata, Tailevu and is the second eldest of four siblings. She hopes to complete the programme by February next year. 

Epeli Bose, who has enrolled in the Welding and Fabricating programme said described studies as ‘interesting’ so far.

The 21-year-old who hails from Raralevu, Namata, Tailevu encouraged youths to take up blue collar training opportunities.

“Don’t waste time doing something you don’t enjoy was the best advice my father ever gave me. You have to be passionate about your trade,” Bose said.

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