After Emerging Kerala, the Labour and Rehabilitation Department is gearing up to conduct an international summit Emerging Skills, Kerala, in Kochi to harness the expertise of trainer institutions and professionals for evolving a skill development regime for the State and converting Kerala into a skill training destination.

The thrust of the meet planned in association with the Industries Department is on drawing up a Kerala model in skill development as part of the Prime Minister’s initiative for providing skill training to 50 crore youth by 2022.

It has been proposed to create a talent pool of employable youth by conducting aptitude and skill assessment of students with the support of trainer institutions and trainers of international repute. The Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) and Industrial Training Centres (ITCs) will forge tie-ups with industrial majors and rope in their experts and thorough training sessions will be made an integral part of the courses in all trades

In addition to the 120 ITIs run by the Industrial Training Department, there are about 450 private ITCs and 80 vocational training institutes in the State. The department had recently launched an Additional Skills Enhancement Programme for dropouts and youngsters who are not keen on pursuing an academic career. By including the students in schools and colleges, it has been proposed to impart skill development programmes to 1 lakh youth a year.

A concept note prepared by M.P. Joseph, adviser to the Labour Department, states that the summit planned in December will develop a comprehensive State Skills Plan to be implemented between January 1, 2014, and December 31, 2022, to coincide with the Prime Minister’s Skilling India Initiative. It will focus on the skills specific to the State, the nation, and the global market.

It has been proposed to set up an institute for training instructors, and develop a programme for imparting soft skills, among others. An Apprentice Monitoring Authority for scrutinising the performance of apprentices and a Kerala Skills University have been proposed for awarding degree and diploma to those who complete the programmes. Large-scale training infrastructure will be built up for achieving the target in a time-bound manner.

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