USAID-PBED, City Gov’t set 1st GIA Summit, Youth Skills forum Nov. 8-9

The city government, in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Philippine Business for Education (PBEd), particularly under the YouthWorks PH project and Opportunity 2.0 program, is set to hold two events aimed primarily at strengthening the functionality of the city’s Government-Industry-Academe (GIA) Council in addressing issues affecting employment opportunities for Zamboangueno youths.

Around 250 participants coming from the aforementioned sectors are expected to attend.

On November 8, the city’s Public Employment Service Office (PESO), YouthWorks PH, Opportunity 2.0, and the Zamboanga Chamber of Commerce and Industry Foundation, Inc. will jointly host the First Zamboanga GIA Summit 2023.

The summit aims to gather GIA stakeholders to tackle concerns on skills gap and job-skills mismatch; promote mainstreaming of work-based training to employment in the industry; and create policies that are responsive to workforce development, especially for youths not in employment, education or training (NEET) and the out-of-school youths (OSYs).

The PBEd on November 9 will gather youth organizations, recruitment partners, and potential institutional partners in the Youth Skills and Employability Forum to discuss skills gap and job-skills mismatch; orient each about YouthWorks PH; and recognize their valuable contributions to the project and the development of the youth workforce.

To recall, the local government in October 2020 passed City Ordinance No. 544 establishing the city’s GIA Council as the key driver of education reforms in Zamboanga.

In particular, the council shall endeavor to increase industry involvement and participation in the academia, including but not limited to providing industry and business perspectives in curriculum development and review, and opening opportunities for immersion, apprenticeship, on-the-job trainings and enterprise-based trainings for learners and students; improve local market information sharing, particularly on labor statistics, data on job projections, and school performance, among others; improve access and enhance the governance system of the local higher education sector by fostering a culture of collaboration among members of the council; and promote exchange of vital and relevant information and provision of support between members of the council. (Claudine Uniana)