Two more organisations have signed up with the Fiji National University’s National Apprenticeship Scheme, bringing the total number of companies under this program to 15 so far for this year.
Government Shipping Services (GSS) employed 11 apprentices while Niranjans Suva outlet signed up 4. The total number of apprentices now stands at 32.
The apprentices signed up by GSS are studying Marine Engineering (3) and Navigation and Seaman (8). All 11 will be on a 4 year contract with GSS.
GSS Acting Director Josese Lawaniyasana commended the scheme saying it was a great initiative to engage school leavers looking to acquire a trade qualification.
“Under this scheme students will be guided through on the job training, counseling and monitoring and they are encouraged to reach their goals,” Lawaniyasana said.
New apprentice recruit Lusiana Cokanasiga, 21 hails from Koro will be taking up the Trade Diploma in Nautical Science.
“I signed up for this programme because I have a goal of becoming a Ships Master on a container vessel and this is a good opportunity for me to help finance my schooling. Not many females would like to sign up for this trade field – but I love adventures and being out at sea and working on board. I have had some experience and I really love it,” said Cokanasiga.
Fellow apprentice Monisha Prasad, 20 also a Trade Diploma in Nautical Science, said she was looking forward to the training.
“It’s in my blood to be in the sea. My grandfather and other families were fishermen so I decided to take it one step further and sign up to become an apprentice. I am so looking forward to the apprenticeship training with GSS,” Prasad said.
Director NTPC Doctor Isimeli Tagicakiverata commended the organisations that had teamed up with NTPC for scheme.
“Since its inception, the Apprenticeship scheme has grown from strength to strength. It’s a scheme like no other. The Apprenticeship scheme helped organisations grow its own talent, reduced staff turnover and gave businesses the skills it needed to succeed. Countries around the world who have similar apprenticeship schemes are reaping the benefits partnering with industries and organisations,” he said.
The National Apprenticeship Scheme was introduced in 1963 under the Ministry of Labour and known as the Fiji Apprenticeship Council. Its role is regulated and administered by the National Training & Productivity Centre through the support from the Industries to address the skills required and to produce competent and certified work force for the organisations.
The NTPC manages the Apprenticeship Department which administers 22 Trade Certificate programmes and 7 Technician levels. The Apprenticeship program offers a systematic on-job practical learning and off-job study.