Staff of Pacific Technical and Further Education (Pacific TAFE) Labasa Centre.
Within a span of two years since its opening, the USP Pacific TAFE Labasa Centre is now offering all programmes provided at any other Pacific TAFE campus.
Last year, the centre experienced a 27 percent increase in its student numbers and currently has around 1,500 students enrolled for various courses.
The Centre Coordinator, Ivamere Chand said that Pacific TAFE has witnessed humongous growth since its opening in Labasa in 2016.
Ms. Chand said that initially the centre started with only skilled based courses at Certificate and Diploma levels and in 2017 it started providing preliminary and foundation courses as well.
“Now programmes offered through cohort basis is available and we are looking at extending further by bringing in cookery, tourism and hospitality programmes,” she said.
“We have reached out to three provinces in the Northern Division which is Bua, Cakaudrove and Macuata. We are working closely with the people from the community, Ministry of iTaukei Affairs and the business community.
“We are trying to promote Pacific TAFE further in the northern division because not everyone wants to do a degree programme.”
She stressed that people in the Northern Division have limited access to white collar jobs and are more dependent on farming and small business operations for survival.
“However, due to lack of academic qualifications these people are unable to properly manage their businesses hence courses provided by Pacific TAFE becomes very handy,” said Ms. Chand.
She emphasised that the Early Childhood Education programme provided by Pacific TAFE is very popular in the Northern Division along with Office Management and Information Technology courses.
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