Private companies urged to help develop education sector

James Kon

Minister of Education Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Hamzah bin Haji Sulaiman urged private companies to assume a vital role in developing the education sector, notably the country’s technical and vocational education sub-sectors.

The minister made the call during Politeknik Brunei (PB)’s 6th Convocation Ceremony at Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) yesterday.

“The technical and vocational fields are among the biggest contributors to job opportunities in the country. With more access to technical and vocational programmes in the private sector, it will create an innovative and competitive educational environment in producing high-quality manpower with high marketability,” he said.

The minister advised graduates to make full use of their knowledge and experiences, saying, “In addition to academic success, I believe that the main skill acquired by graduates is learning to learn.

“It is this skill that determines success when entering the world of work or entrepreneurship later. Mastering one or two skills is not enough to guarantee a lifetime of employment, because of the rapid pace of economic and technological changes.

“In other words, practise lifelong learning so that you stay relevant and possess the latest knowledge in whatever field you are involved in.

“PB must always be attentive in adapting to circumstances and needs, especially in terms of pedagogical approach, at this time. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual and online teaching and learning have become the new norm on the educational landscape. Make use of the challenges of digital teaching as an opportunity for PB to be more determined and innovative in applying the skills and competencies, in the use of educational technology for students and instructors.

“The Ministry of Education (MoE) urges PB to include educational and industrial interests in the Strategic Plan of 2021-2025, which I understand is currently being planned and carried out to produce graduates who are innovative, future-ready and resilient, who are much needed in jointly supporting the development of the country’s progress.”

Minister of Education Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Hamzah bin Haji Sulaiman hands over a certificate during the Politeknik Brunei’s 6th Convocation Ceremony. PHOTO: BAHYIAH BAKIR