Playing with Fire

TESDA as trailblazer

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By Gonzalo Duque

PRESIDENTIABLE Manny Villar did a big booboo when he remarked rather irresponsibly that for one to be able to launch a bid for the presidency, he must at least have Pl billion.

As expected, his rivals the likes of Dick Gordon, Ping Lacson, Mar Roxas and Loren Legarda ganged up on him as if they were not planning to do the same. Manny was simply telling the truth, but it would have been discreet not to spill the stinking beans. Sa totoo lang, pare parehong mga hypcritical ang mga yan. Akala mo hindi gagastang malaki, e alam naman nating lahat na kinakati na silang magbili ng botos.

Sana kung si Miriam Santiago ang nag sabi ng Pl billion, e di wala sanang kikibo,ano? Ganyan katindi si Miriam. Kayo naman Dick, Ping, Mar, Loren, para kayong born yesterday!

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One can’t help admire this unassuming but effective government agency that is heroically beating the unemployment problem in the country, without “any air at all.”

We are referring to the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) under our friend Augusto “Boboy” Syjuco, director general. Without fanfare, Boboy has fanned out to the provinces to see to it that out-of-school youths, including college graduates and even parents who are losing in the employment game are gainfully employed. And how! They are able to find their special skills, have them developed and, best of all, are used and they get paid handsomely.

TESDA has become an antidote to the worsening problem of unemployment and joblessness in the country, a major cause of despair among our people.

Well, under Boboy, the government is moving effectively to beat joblessness — and in those places you thought were unworkable and beyond one’s ken and aptitude. The inspiring fact is many Pinoys are enjoying what they are discovering in, of and for themselves and for country. Much better than the much despised blue collar jobs, they find their new jobs enjoyable because they love and enjoy working their new-found sources of income, joy and happiness.

That expression “happy hands are busy hands” is finding its proper place in the national psyche, and is siring productive and skilled workers.

While in Binmaley, at the College of Fisheries. We came to know that Tesda students come from many parts of the province. We met students of commercial cooking, computer science, dressmaking, automotive, cosmetology, hair science, name it from Mapandan town.

We were told that soon the school will give up the word “fisheries” and hence will be called, “Binmaley Technical Institute,” because it is offering several programs or courses. Many of the students we saw were scholars, and Director General Boboy has budgeted a minimal amount, aside from tuition fees, for the students’ daily needs such as transport and food. That beats the skeptics. As you well know, some scholarships were destined to fail because nothing was appropriated for transport and snacks. Hug Beboy for his practical wisdom.

It won’t be long, as we have intimated to Tesda officials like Boboy, Regional Director Washington Agustin and Pangasinan Director Pons Catipon when Tesda will enjoy the same prestige as the Ched or the DepEd, if not in fact, better because of its concrete evidence of practical wisdom which is now turning the country around, if you ask us. It’s the most sensible step to beat the global economic meltdown.

May your tribe increase, Tesda people

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Do you have a green mind? O, ikaw Maning, iba ang iniisip mo. Idalem takad Auring et.

We are impressed by a quiet revolution in Dagupan City’s schools and backyards. Gulayan! That is why we called it the greening movement. It was during the Martial Law years when this was done and called the Green Revolution of Imelda Marcos. Now, it is called gulayan of Mayor Al Fernandez, but includes livestock and fishpond development projects. We commend the mayor who started one at his fishpond, and also, the Tondaligan Blue Beach Subdivision for their backyard gardening project. A creative program. We are endorsing it for our people in these austere times.

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