Following is the full-text of the virtual message delivered by State Counsellor to occasion of 125th anniversary of GTI education.
It gives me great satisfaction and much delight to have this opportunity to speak at today’s ceremony to celebrate the 125 anniversary of GTI education which has been contributing to the development of vocational skills which is indispensible for our country’s socio-economic development.
Insein GTI came into existence as a Government Engineering School on 1 April 1895 at 297 Myoma Street, Latha Township. It is also one among the 12 engineering schools that were established; it was the first among them.
In 1898 it was moved to where the Department of Veterinary Medicine now stands in front of the Insein railway station. After that ten years later in 1908, the school was moved to its present location at Insein (Ywama) under the name of “Government School of Engineering and Technical High School”. In 1912 the name was changed to “Government Technical Institute” and began teaching vocational education subjects.
During the colonial period, according to records, a Burmese gentleman by the name of U Ba Hli served as principal.
After that during the period of Japanese occupation, the name GTI was changed to “State Technical Institute – STI”; its location was moved to the Rangoon General Hospital compound and thereafter at the end of the colonial period on 15 August 1945 it was moved to No. 6 Churchill road (now Komin Kochin road).
During the end of the post war period, it was moved to its former location to the Insein (Ywama) GTI building; during the AFPFL period it was moved to the Gujarati school building on U Wisara road; after that in 1950 it was moved again to its former location at Insein (Ywama) GTI. This is thus the history its various location changes. From the date of its inception on 1 April 1895 to 1 April 2020, it is now 125 years.
The GTI which was reopened at its original location in 1950 received technical and financial assistance and technical experts from the Commonwealth countries under the Colombo Plan. Efforts were also initiated to send GTI teachers abroad to upgrade their professional skills and competencies.
In 1954 under the programme of the Ford Foundation from America, technical assistance was received from the “William Hood Dunwoody Industrial Institute of Minneapolis, U.S.A. to provide assistance to four foreign technical experts; it was also able to send state scholars for administrative and substantive subjects.
Beginning from Insein GTI, technical institutes were opened all over the country (Mandalay, Kalaw, Pyay, Chauk, Mawlamyine, Hinthada, Taungoo, Monywa, Meikhtila, Maupin, Thanhlyin) for providing technical education and training.
In building a modern and developed Democratic Federal Union, it is very important for the GTI schools to be of high quality in order to produce highly qualified technical professionals, professionals and technicians. The socio-economic life of the people can develop only if the country’s vocational education level is truly developed. It is for this reason that the continuous development of Insein GTI schools has become increasingly important day by day and has assumed an important role. It is very important to join hands and work together for the emergence of vocational schools with levels of expertise which not only match South East-Asian standards but also international standards.
For our country to become modern and developed, all students attending technical and vocational courses at the Insein GTI as well as all the technical colleges and schools should become good human beings well qualified in their respective areas of expertise, well-versed in technical knowledge and with the correct attitude. You can become valuable citizens for the country only if you become highly qualified human resources. It is therefore beyond a doubt that only good citizens can work for the sustainable development of this planet.
It is therefore very important to work with special focus for the development of not only the Insein GTI but also all GTI’s providing instructions in vocational education all over the country beginning from the 125th Anniversary of GTI education. Furthermore, we also need to work for providing courses which correspond with local needs; for this we need to build new schools systematically. To be able to implement these kinds of programmes with sound footing and effectiveness, we are already implementing strategic programmes systematically.
Since the Yangon Heritage Trust has already officially recognized important historical buildings and artifacts important for the Insein GTI, we need to continue working relentlessly for their preservation by keeping these matters always in our minds.
Since we are transforming the Insein GTI, which is steeped in tradition, into a TVET campus which will become a hub for technical and vocational education, the Union Government has been providing financial assistance annually from the government budget for basic buildings and modern teaching aids. Also for capacity building in the areas of management and teaching skills, we are cooperating with local organizations such as UMFCCI – Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Myanmar Garment Manufacturers Association, AGTI Society, and foreign entities such as GTZ from Germany, KfW, and Swisscontact from Switzerland for upgrading the skills and competencies of teachers from technical and vocational schools, demonstrators and administrative personnel. To upgrade the skills and competencies of GTI students, practical skills competitions were successfully held to commemorate the World Youth Skills Day at Insein GTI beginning from 2018.
The Myanmar UNEVOC was established with financial assistance from UNEVOC in December 2018 at Insein GTI. Work is being done at the regional level on research and development; TVET related workshops and seminars have also been conducted.
Five objectives were adopted to successfully work for the long-term development of GTI’s as a result of the 125th Anniversary of GTI Education. These five objectives are: –
To be able to enter the work force in a short period with adequate knowledge and skills and with full commitment after completing basic education;
To train and produce supervisory level professionals who will meet regional industrial needs;
To contact and network with industrial enterprises to provide opportunities for good jobs;
To create opportunities for receiving vocational training, opportunities to receive advanced education, and opportunities for life-long learning;
To reduce the urban-rural development gap and to elevate the socio-economic life of the people.
In conclusion I wish to say that Insein GTI which gave birth to GTI Education on 1 April 1895 has completed 125 years on 1 April 2020. It has withstood the vicissitudes of time, overcome many daunting challenges and has been able to maintain many good traditions successfully. The Union government, together with other relevant organizations needs to participate and cooperate to transform GTI into an international level vocational education institute. I conclude this speech by sending good wishes for continued success for many years from the 125th anniversary onwards.
I pray for your good health and well-being. May the GTI’s succeed and prosper. (Translated by Kyaw Myaing)