Vocational trainers are skill champions performing many roles while imparting skills and knowledge in different trades. They bring the mandatory industry experience to create a positive difference in the trainees and leave a lasting impact on their lives. Vocational training is a combination of multiple skills – teaching, coaching, mentoring and counseling – depending on the course requirements and the needs of the learners.
On the occasion of Teacher’s Day we spoke to a cross section of trainers and master trainers engaged with LabourNet, an NSDC partner, in different parts of India. We are delighted to share their experience, challenges and aspirations as a humble gesture to appreciate their commitment, contribution and dedication to skill development, research and education.
A common thread through all the trainers is their passion for sharing knowledge and helping the youth learn and earn in most effective ways. They have consciously chosen to be trainers since they want to contribute to the society by skilling and upskilling for employability, entrepreneurship and livelihood enablement. Read on to know more about the positive impact they have been creating in the evolving skill development ecosystem in India through work-integrated training.
“I’m happy to train and skill the candidates. I’m a civil engineer with 16 years experience in classroom training and on site training. I’ve specialized in masonry and bar bending. I’ve been a trainer in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and my emphasis is on practical aspects of learning in the lab or training yard. I combine theory with hands-on training to teach ‘why’ and ‘how’ of a particular skill, for example, teaching brick masonry as per codes, quality and standards. It is difficult to convince the contractor to give enough time so theory classes are held before 8.00 AM and practicals are done while they work.” Uday Bhanu Sahana, Delhi, Construction Skills
“I’ve 10 years of experience in beautician skills and I love to train and share my knowledge and skills. If I had worked in a salon I could have earned more, but my intention is not to make money. My objective is to help young girls and guide them through skill development and counselling to take up a job and improve their life, prepare them to face the world, motivate and encourage them. I help them with communication skills too. I’ve mastered the art of engaging the students by getting down to their levels.” Lakshmi Venkatesh, Bengaluru, Beauty and Hair Care Skills
“I’ve B.E-Mechanical and M.Tech-Production Technology degrees. I worked in the auto show room and the industry. I’ve been into training for 2 years and I want to contribute to the society to help the underprivileged; I didn’t want to join a typical commercial training institute; I wanted to work with an organzation at grassroots level. The challenge is to understand the students’ level and teach them accordingly. If I were teaching in colleges I wouldn’t have known what the students would be doing after training. In vocational training, I’m involved from day one and monitor their growth, results and placement.” Prakash Rajamani, Bengaluru, Auomotive Skills
“I’ve studied at CLRI, and I’m engaged in training in leather goods and garments stitching as a master trainer catering to Ambatur and Tambaram regions. I’ve 6 years of experience and earlier working for a leather manufacturing company, I was involved in mobilizing students and training them. Then I realized the huge demand for skilled human resources for better productivity in leather sector so I became a trainer. Manufacturing is a monotonous job whereas in training I get to meet different people, use and train in latest technology and I enjoy it” .Ganesan, Chennai, Leather Skills
I’ve an MBA finance degree and I’m into beauty and hair care training by choice. My family has been in this business and since childhood I was interested in this field. Then I got trained formally in an academy. I like hairstyling and hair cutting I attend seminars to keep myself updated. This is more of a creative job; it’s a craft. I love to teach, and when the students get placed, I feel very happy. I plan to open my own salon. Ankita Tamang, Gangtok, Sikkim, Beauty and Hair Care Skills
“I’m an electrical trainer with 3 years experience. I’m a qualified ITI Electrical Technician. I’m a trainer by choice. I love to share my knowledge and skills for helping others. I wish to see my students use latest technologies and tools and do better than me with their skills. I want to upgrade my knowledge and skills to be able to train future students more effectively.” Nanda Kumar , Gummidipoondi, TN, Electrical Skills
“I’ve a Diploma in Beautician and a BBM. I’ve 15 years experience in working at beauty parlour. I’m inspired by my trainer to get into training and skill development. I teach mixed group of freshers and for experienced candidates I help them fill specific skill gaps. I’m recognized as a superstar trainer and our center in Pondicherry is one of the best. Till today, I have trained 500 candidates and it is satisfying to see some of them have set up their own parlours and offer home based services.” Rupalakshmi, Pondicherry , Beauty and Hair Care Skills
“Earlier, I was training farmers in Lakhimpur Kheri. I’ve an M.Sc in Agriculture and an MBA. What interests me most is meeting farmers, advising them on crops and harvesting methods to avoid losses. I want to improve their condition by giving scientific knowledge and latest techniques and skills. I train them in seed processing, practically showing them the difference between the quality of seeds and how good seeds will benefit farmers.” Rupesh Kumar Srivastav, Jaunpur, Uttar Pradesh, Agriculture Skills
“I’ve been training in various verticals like Retail and Automobiles and I’ve 40 years of experience. Currently I consult with various corporates and I’m passionate about training. It’s a pleasure to teach students, share knowledge and skills and see them do well. More than the monetary aspects, we get an opportunity to change their life, their attitude and influence them positively. The challenge is to train students with low self-esteem by making them comfortable and confident. I would advice young trainers to have thorough knowledge about the industry, be very patient and understand that all people are not alike. The should be clear in their approach and well-versed in the subject.” Venkat Narayan, Chennai, Retail Skills
“I was always interested in automobile sector and I did a course from ITI in Diesel Mechanic and Motor mechanic. I’ve 15 years of experience. After working as a mechanic, I started my own garage, then started training in ITI in tractor repairing and a variety or roles. The challenge is to teach dropouts since they cannot learn in the same way as students from regular colleges. I emphasize on practicals and job related training.” Sampada Sandeep Ghag, Mumbai – Automotive Skills
“I teach tailoring and I’ve 12 years of experience. Earlier I had my own tailoring shop and I used to take private classes to teach girls. I wanted to help people who are unemployed, I was more interested in this than earning for myself. I wanted to skill others so that they start their own business. I fulfilled my wish and became a trainer. My classes have full attendance. I blend theory and practice and I refer to the internet for new designs and patterns, especially to help those who start their own business.” Gajanan Kisan Supekar, Khamgaon Maharashtra, Tailoring-Apparels Skills
“Many people don’t know what hospitality is. They mistake it for hospitals and injections. I had to create awareness about hospitality skills like housekeeping, F&B and tourist skills like being a guides etc. I’ve a PG degree and the respect I get through training gives me immense satisfaction. I work with underprivileged sections who can’t even earn Rs 10 on their own per day. Post training they are able to earn Rs 4000 – 5000 per month. They can support their families and have decent livelihoods. As trainers we add colours to the live of students and help them blossom. I wish to pursue my Ph.D.” Gayatri Bhuyan, Digboi, Assam, Hospitality and Tourism Skills
“I’ve a B.com degree and I worked in microfinance industry for the last 7 years. I started as a guest lecturer, got interested in sharing knowledge, new ideas and I was happy to clear doubts of the learners. I come from a family of teachers, I love to interact with students, teach them new techniques with examples. The challenge is to groom myself, enhance my knowledge by refer to the books, internet and contribute to the society.” Praful Muralidhar Charate, Nagpur, Microfinance Skills
“I’ve mostly learnt by observing family members who were into tailoring. Later I got certified and now I train students. Most interesting part of training is the questions we get from the students, through them I get to learn new stuff, we get to celebrate cultural events together and learn from each other. I’m passionate about teaching people, Earlier, I used to do it informally at home and with girls in the neighbourhood and now I’m able to make a difference to many in the society.” Parvinder Kaur Sidhu, Kolkata, Tailoring-Apparels Skills
“I’ve been a master trainer with a Diploma in Mobile Phone Technology. I’ve trained 7 batches till now. I’ve worked in a vocational training center in Kannur. I love to improve the students’ skills and knowledge. They want to work in smart phone technologies. For the students who’ ve just completed higher secondary school, we give them additional skills from ASAP. This helps in getting jobs.. In Kerala most students want to be on their own after school, so they choose vocational courses, I focus more on practicals along with site visits.” Shibraj, Kerala, Mobile phone maintenance skills
“I’ve been in the field of rubber since 2000. I began as a chemist, then moved into R&D and later got an opportunity to become a trainer. Earlier I worked as a junior rubber technician, making rubber window profiles. After gaining rich industry experience I moved to training. My students are almost illiterate, so they can’t understand theory, they learn through practicals and demos. I help them in taking assessments on tablets by reading out the questions. I feel proud to be a trainer; I’m able to touch someone’s life”. Ankur Sharma , Delhi, Rubber Skills