FSM workers eyed for buildup
Wednesday, 28 October 2009 00:42
by Therese Hart | Variety News Staff
AN HISTORIC strategic alliance agreement was signed yesterday afternoon between the Federated States of Micronesia President Emanuel Mori and Center for Micronesian Empowerment chairman Ansito Walter, a University of Guam professor and former governor of Chuuk state.
The alliance will facilitate the assimilation and integration of workers from Micronesia into Guam’s workforce with thousands of jobs that will become available over the military buildup period.
“We must make sure that employers look to the people of our region first and that our people are ready for that call. This alliance is extremely important because it will enable our young men and women to get the required training to give them the necessary skills to make them employable here in Guam and especially because of the military buildup,” said Mori.
CME is a non-governmental organization representing business, community leaders and government officials. Its purpose is to assess, assimilate, train and find employment for the residents of the region.
Mike Ghiglione, executive director of CME said the organization has established a working relationship with the Guam Contractors Association Trades Academy to make sure as many local and regional workers as possible are prepared for the jobs the military buildup will bring.
Mori said he anticipates recruiting approximately 5,000 young men and women interested in gaining valuable job skills not just for Guam, but also for work in Hawaii and the on the U.S. mainland.
The president said his people have migrated to these areas for lack of employment within FSM states.
Not all of the 5,000 potential recruits will come to Guam since many of them will be receiving training at the College of Micronesia in Pohnpei, currently gearing up for vocational training, said Mori.
After they’ve completed their training there, many are expected to travel to Guam and elsewhere to receive a higher level of training. On Guam, many will find this training at GCC and the Guam Contractors Association Trades Academy, said Mori.
The trades academy and GCC will be expanding its facilities to meet the growing demands of students who desire to obtain a trade in their schools.
In November, the launch of a landmark program will assist residents in the state of Kosrae to obtain training necessary to become productive members of Guam’s workforce.
The alliance agreement seeks to expand the program across all of Micronesia and hopes to attract a workforce from the region, as opposed to employing thousands of foreign workers.
This would allow Micronesia’s island nation states the opportunity to play a greater role in the military realignment and economic boom associated with the buildup.
“The services that CME provides are precisely what’s needed to allow the people of Micronesia to more fully participate in the military buildup. We intend to do all that we can to ensure that the employment needed for the buildup on Guam comes from the region we call Micronesia, within which Guam stands as our proud brother,” said the FSM president.
Tuition funding will come from various sources such as Department of Interior Funds as well as compact impact funds and federal financial aid programs provided at the trade schools.