The HEART Trust/National Training Agency (NTA) has re-named the campus for its academy at Junction in south east St. Elizabeth, the Derrick Rochester Campus, in honour of the former parliamentarian who represented the area.
The academy, the Southwest Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) Institute, offers courses in engineering, furniture making, website designing, agro processing, and the creative arts.
A ceremony to mark the campus’ official re-naming was held at the institute on Friday, March 22.
In his remarks, guest speaker, Education Minister, Rev. the Hon. Ronald Thwaites, noted Mr. Rochester’s instrumentality in establishing the current institution’s predecessor, the Junction Training Centre. He pointed out that Mr. Rochester, a retired trade unionist, was a staunch advocate for the provision of training, particularly in vocational areas, to persons who needed it.
“(He understood) that Jamaica’s future… was hinged upon the development of competencies that were appropriate for the workforce,” Rev. Thwaites stated.
In this regard, the Minister urged the campus’ administrators to develop a programme of training in agriculture.
This, Rev. Thwaites contended, in order to ensure that the sector is given adequate support, through the provision of quality training, to facilitate, among other things, a diversification in the varieties of crops cultivated, thereby enhancing the nation’s food security and reducing its import bill.
By Garfield Angus, JIS Reporter