Our impact, Their voices

When the vision is clear strategy is easy

In Bangladesh, the skills sector is in need of quality trainers and assessors. ILO's European Union-funded Skills 21 project is working with the Directorate of Technical Education (DTE) to establish a modern skills system and meet the demand for the skills delivery system. Khadija Hossain Setu took the skills training from Khulna Mahila Polytechnic Institute and was then inspired to become an instructor to give skills training to the youth.

Feature | Dhaka | 15 July 2022
Khadija as trainee © ILO
I am Khadija Hossain Setu. In 2016, I completed my diploma in electronics from Khulna Mahila Polytechnic Institute. After that I was admitted to Daffodil University in Dhaka for higher studies. However, in 2019 I became sick and had to come back without finishing my studies.

At home I heard that Khulna Mahila Polytechnic Institute will start providing training on electrical installation and maintenance with the support from European Union funded Skills 21 project. So, I applied and was admitted along with one of my friends. Both of us had mobile servicing training before.

Khadija as trainer © ILO
We have successfully completed our four- month course. The day before our assessment of the training, all the educational institutions had to close due to the first COVID-19 lockdown. After about seven months, when the situation was somewhat normal, the assessment took place.

At that time, I got a job at the Super Star Company in Khulna with a salary of BDT 6,000 (US$70) per month. However, I didn’t accept the offer and went to Dhaka instead, to do the Level 2 course in electrical installation and maintenance which was not available in Khulna. I always thought that if I wanted to make a good income, I would have to be much more efficient with upgraded skills. After completing Level 2, I contacted the Technical Teachers’ Training College (TTTC) in Dhaka to study Level 4, that consists of an assessor and trainers’ part. My friend and I enrolled and completed the assessor part and both of us were assessed as competent. Among the five participants, four were women.

While I completed the electrical training in Khulna, my trainer at the institute, Sayeka Madam assisted me throughout the whole course. She got a new job at the Ahsania Mission, so her position became vacant at the Khulna Mohila Polytechnic Institute. I decided to apply for the position as I am now L4 competent.

After the competitive process I was delighted to be offered the job and joined as the new trainer with a salary of BDT 22,500 (US$265).

Up front I will complete the Level 4 trainer part from TTTC. Then I will have a salary increment. My older sister also works as a master trainer. Since my father died four years ago, both of us are the bread earners of the family. My elder brother is mentally handicapped and my younger brother is a grade six student. Due to my mother's mental illness, we have to take care of her as well and do the household chores.

I have created my position through my skills and qualifications. I have learned that the government of Bangladesh has also started level 5 training to meet the demand of TVET delivery. I want to do the L5 training in the future to upskill myself.

Since there is a shortage of skilled manpower as well as skilled trainers and assessors in our country, I wish to become a skilled trainer and provide training to others. I am promoting TVET and skills development training to the youth and unemployed in my neighbourhood. Because I know, technical skills can give prosperity.