Top vocational training schools fail to attract students

April 10, 2016 | 09:08 pm PT
Top vocational training schools fail to attract students
Students practise at a vocational training school : VietnamPlus
Despite pouring billions of dong into modern equipment and study materials, many vocational training schools have low enrollment rates.

Many classrooms are left unused, representing a large waste in these schools.

The Hanoi Electromechanical Vocational Training College is a prime example. Last year, the school spent $3 million on study equipment and another VND11 billion ($493,000) teacher training. In 2014, the school was given 14 billion VND ($628,000) to buy modern equipment and 20 billion VND ($897,000) to build infrastructure.

The school is considered one of the best vocational schools in the country with the most up to dat machinery.

However, the school remains deserted and many vocational training classes are yet start.
In 2014, about 1,200 students enrolled at the school. Last year, the number rose slightly to 1,236, but the school has a capacity of 3,000 students.

Although the school promises to refund student fees for graduates who cannot find a job and is working with 50 enterprises to create jobs for graduates, enrollment is still a problem, said school rector Đồng Văn Ngọc.

The Hanoi Vocational College of High Technology is facing a similar situation. Established in 2009, the school has invested roughly VND200 billion ($8.9 million) in machinery and equipment for 20 professional practices.

With modern facilities, the school was expected to attract about 6,000 students per academic year.
However, after five years of operation, Pham Xuan Khanh, rector of the school, said a shortage of students remains a big problem despite the school’s efforts.

When it opened, the school only attracted about 1,000 students each year. Last year, the school took a series of measures such as speaking to students at high schools about the college and working with dozens of businesses to assure 90 percent of graduates would have jobs. The number of enrolled students increased modestly to 2,000.

“About 500 students dropped out during the training process,” he said.

“Many tools have never been used as we don’t have the students.”

The school trained only 100 students in 2011 and the number dropped even further in the following years.

Cao Van Sam, deputy director of the General Department of Vocational Training, said that many private vocational schools ended up closing down and hundreds of public vocational schools were forced to integrate.

Sam said the reason was that vocational schools could not compete with universities, especially when many universities now only review transcripts for enrollment like many vocational schools do.
Sam said the idea of going to a university at all costs instead of applying for a vocational school that suited the students’ ability also worsened the situation.

“Students should focus on what will get them a job,” he said, adding that in recent years, thousands of unemployed university graduates have turned to vocational training to find employment.

Figures from the General Department of Vocational Training show there are approximately 190 vocational colleges and 245 vocational centres in the country. However, enrollment numbers do not meet their training capacity with less than two million students enrolled in these schools last year.

Source: VietnamPlus

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