Photo: Julio Martínez Molina

LAJAS, Cienfuegos.– Technical and Professional Education (ETP) in Cuba, conducted through 466 polytechnic institutes throughout the island, with 103 programs of study and more than 160,000 students enrolled, guarantees the skilled workforce demanded by the country’s economy.

Speaking to Granma, Sc.D. Eugenio González Pérez, national director of this educational level, noted that his is a huge responsibility, designed to meet the expectations of all sectors - including the non-state sector - in order to contribute to the socio-economic development of the island.

“The incorporation of Technical Education as a subsystem that can revitalize the economy, in conjunction with central state administration agencies, has resulted in the current appropriate moment for a perfecting of the national education system, within which our plans and programs are contextualized to the same extent that these agencies are developing technologically,” he explained.

In this sense, he offered the example of the 2nd National Competition of Student Brigades of Mechanized Sugar Cane Cutting and Harvesting, taking place March 14-17 in Lajas, under the auspices of the Ministry of Education and Azcuba, in which students from 13 provinces employ innovations in this sector.

ETP graduates must be knowledgeable and efficient workers, with patriotic principles and values, committed to the Revolution and capable of becoming dynamic activists in the country, the director emphasized.

Asked about declining enrollment, Eugenio González said, “To the same extent that different agencies have been expanding their demand on the basis of their needs, we have been strengthening and covering the different specialties.”

He emphasized the beginning this school year in La Coloma, Pinar del Río, of the Skilled Fishing Worker program, as well as the training of mid-level technicians and skilled workers with a view to their employment in the Colombia sugar mill, in Las Tunas, in response to the work force demanded by Azcuba.