As a demonstration of its expertise as a TVET organization that is capable of providing related services to other markets in the region, the Director General of CPSC, Dr. Mohammad Naim Yaakub together with the CPSC Faculty Consultant, Dr. Hazrat Hussain embarked on an official mission to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia from February 7-9, 2015.
The official mission is an invitation forwarded by the Saudi Skills Standards (SSS) as a part of the final bidding process for the Institutional Review Project slated to happen from March to May 2015. CPSC has been shortlisted as one of the potential providers of this project.
The CPSC delegation, together with their translator, Mr. Shushilil Azam Bin Shuib, made a presentation to SSS regarding the possible consulting opportunities that may tackle performance evaluation of TVET Institutions' in the Kingdom.
The meeting and presentation was graced by the presence of Mr. Muhammad Ali Asiri, Vice- President for Quality and Standards and other key officials of the SSS quality assurance wing including: Mr. Mosaab Alburih, Ms.Sarah Al-Thukair, Mr. Nasir Abdullah Huwaimil, Mr. Ghassan Ghazzawi and Mr. Anwar M. Alananzi. After an hour of presentation which included the specifications and technical aspects of the project, a discussion followed on the details of possible collaborative intervention for institutional review, training of the reviewers and mechanism for transfer of knowledge to local TVET officials as potential reviewers. The outcome of this discussion is still to be communicated by the SSS to CPSC as of this time.
Noting that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is already a member of the Colombo Plan Council Dr. Naim seized the opportunity to invite Saudi Arabia to become a member of CPSC. In a proactive pursuit, the DG also arranged a meeting with Engr. Ibrahim Al Rasheed, General Director of Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC) on 9th February at his office.
The discussion was held in a very cordial and positive manner in which Dr. Naim briefed TVTC about the status, functions, role and services of CPSC for the promotion of TVET in the Asia Pacific region. Some of the inquiries that Mr. Rasheed communicated were about the benefits, membership procedures and possible role of Saudi Arabia in contributing to the development of TVET in the region. In conclusion, the meeting ended in a very positive note as Mr. Al Rasheed showed keen interest in participating in the affairs of the College and has expressed his willingness to bring up the issue with the relevant ministries. He also conveyed his intentions to visit CPSC at an appropriate time.
Among other activities lined up during the official mission, was a visit conducted by Dr. Hazrat at the Makkah College of Excellence in Makkah on February 12, in coordination with Mr. Jamal Sarayeh, one of the senior officials of the college. During the visit, Mr. Jamal briefed Dr. Hazrat on the history, functions, activities and some issues related to the college and brought him on a guided tour to classes, laboratories and administrative blocks of the College. They discussed avenues of mutual collaboration in the field of instructor training such as staff development programs. Dr. Hussain relayed CPSC's willingness to pursue their cooperation through the institution's participation in programs organized by CPSC.
In conclusion, the official mission has been a very fruitful undertaking since it encouraged a closer relationship between the College and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and opened new opportunities for possible linkages between the two entities. Despite the present non-membership of the country, CPSC has been proactive in exploring new avenues for cooperation and mutual development that will benefit the TVET sector of the Kingdom in general. CPSC anticipates the positive outcome of the mission and hopes that more possibilities of mutual agreements will be made in the future.