Kombolcha Polytechnic College conducted capacity strengthening training on gender and disability inclusion

Kombolcha Polytechnic College conducted capacity strengthening training on gender and disability inclusion

By Amanuel Endris

Kombolcha Polytechnic College is working hard to become a Centre of Excellence in Road Transport as one of the EATRIP priority areas. To achieve this goal, building and updating the knowledge and skills of employees, providing the right manpower that the dynamic market demands, and ensuring quality education and training that is all gender and disability inclusive are some of the major duties of the college.

As a TVET institution, providing gender inclusive training that enhances labor market and relevance and employability for all is the major duty of Kombolcha Polytechnic College. The college plays an important role in increasing participation of marginalized groups in the society by providing equal access to training and improving opportunities on labor market linkage.

Participants during a group discussion.

Consequently, the college has conducted capacity strengthening and awareness-raising training on gender and disability inclusive training with a leading adage, ‘Training females is training society.’ The training was held at Hotel Time, Dessie City, from May 16 to 19 May.

Mr. Melaku Aragaw, Dean of the college, formally opened the training session by extending special thanks to Wollo University for quickly sending experts to deliver the training. According to the Dean, this is not the first time the university has cooperated with the college. The university has been collaborating with the college in accepting a number of teachers and training them to upgrade their professions in various occupational areas. For this, matter Mr. Melaku appreciated and thanked Wollo University for always being collaborative and standing partner of Kombolcha Polytechnic College.

Mr. Melaku remarked, ‘Although we have seen encouraging progress in gender equality and inclusive training, the materials we offer to our trainees are not based on the requirements of gender and disability inclusion.’ Mister Melaku has admitted the participation of women in the technical and vocational sector is limited, and recommended the importance of reasonable accommodation and flexible practices that motivate and enable female trainees to join the sector by choice and interest.

Participants during the training session

Dr. Seifemichael Tsegaye, Special Needs and Inclusive Education lecturer at Wollo University, provided a cursory view of the current state of gender in TVET colleges. According to Dr. Seifemichael, the number of female trainees in TVET still remains minimal, and tremendously varies from training sectors to training sectors. He earnestly asserted that Females’ education and training is still constrained by deep-rooted socio-cultural perceptions and beliefs that are linked with gender roles. Whatever justifications be given, prohibiting females from equal access to education and training is not only the violation of their human rights, but is also detrimental to the economic growth and development of a given society.

Composition and selection of participants was given due consideration to include representatives from all departments, cluster colleges and partners. Though absent on overlapping and serious business, heads of the zonal Labor and Training Department and Heads of the Amhara State Bureau of Labor and Training were invited to involve in the training. In cumulative, 42 participants attended the training.

The training featured interactive presentation, group discussions, experience sharing, reflections and plenary sessions led by Dr. Seifemichael Tsegaye- Special Needs and Inclusive Education lecturer at Wollo University and Tilaye Nega- Developmental Psychology lecturer at the aforementioned university.

Eventually, strengths and weaknesses observed during the four-days training session, comments and suggestions were welcomed by training facilitators for discussion and evaluation. participants identified strengths as the training has helped them to learn a lot, and it provided them with a great deal of experience sharing and knowledge of gender perspective approach, whereas frequent power outages during training sessions was raised as a weakness. Dr.seifemichael commented that they enjoyed training and working with the team very much for the last four days. they have appreciated the active participation manifested by the training team from start to the finish of the training. They also have promised to offer professional support and advice to the college anytime.

KPTC Public Relations and Communication Specialist at Kombolcha Polytecnic Colllege

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