UK’s South Essex College recently welcomed a delegation of senior government and business executives from Myanmar to enhance the partnership between the college and the Southeast Asian nation.
The Myanmar delegation got to observe how a UK college operates and engages with local industry to provide quality education and train the advanced technicians needed by the industry.
Victoria University College (VUC) of Yangon and South Essex College began working together in 2013. The partnership began with South Essex College providing initial teacher training for Myanmar tutors on Level 2 and Level 3 courses for the Business programme of VUC.
By late 2014, the partnership had moved on to include training for tutors delivering on the UK Higher National Certificate (HNC) and Higher National Diploma (HND) programmes, with an emphasis on modern teaching methods and student-centred methodologies.
In January 2015, two of the Level 5 tutors from Myanmar’s Engineering Department visited South Essex College for a three week intensive training programme which involved shadowing tutors in classroom situations, interacting with UK students and discussing teaching practice with their UK colleagues.
The Principal of South Essex College, Angela O’Donoghue, said the event was a good opportunity to demonstrate to the delegation the state of the art facilities the college has to provide high quality education and training to students.
“The equipment at the college is industry standard, meaning students are prepared for the real world environment, which is a real attraction to businesses,” she said.
Dr Phyo Thuzar Thein, head of Engineering Department, VUC, said, “I went to South Essex College to observe the UK Higher Education System and attended Specialist Lecturer Training for one month. I learnt effective teaching and learning styles during the training which I will share with other lecturers at VUC.”
There is a high demand for education and training in Myanmar, and the UK’s expertise in this sector can support the economic development of Myanmar by providing students and businesses with necessary skills and knowledge, the British Chamber of Commerce Myanmar said in a statement.
Stephanie Ashmore, executive director of the British Chamber of Commerce in Myanmar, said, “This visit showcased an example of what the UK can offer Myanmar in terms of high quality, international-standard education and vocational training.
“The Chamber hopes to encourage further partnerships between UK colleges and Myanmar education and training providers. By working together, the skills gap in Myanmar can be addressed to support sustainable, inclusive economic development.”