Nestlé Nigeria recently celebrated the 10th anniversary of her Technical Training Program. Over 140 students have benefitted from the program since inception with over 90% of them directly employed by Nestlé Nigeria. The ceremony coincided with the graduation of the 5th batch of trainees from the Agbara Center.
The Technical Training Program was inaugurated in 2011 with the aim to bridge the technical skills gap by equipping youth with the required expertise to support industrialization.
The 18-month intensive vocational training, comprising machining, mechanical fitting operations, electrical operations, instrumentation operations and automation culminates in the prestigious London City and Guilds technical certification. The top five graduates of each batch undergo a further three-month internship program at a Nestlé factory in Switzerland, sponsored by the Swiss Government.
Speaking at the event hosted at the Technical Training Centre in Agbara, the Managing Director, Nestlé Nigeria, Mr Wassim Elhusseini said, “The Technical Training Centre is one of the initiatives of Nestlé Needs Youth, the global flagship program which aims to help 10 million young people worldwide access economic opportunities by 2030.”
“At Nestlé, we believe that young people have a key role to play in building thriving, resilient communities, so we remain passionate about helping them build the capabilities and skills necessary to find fulfilling jobs or create their own businesses. This is what we are implementing through the technical training program in collaboration with the Consulate of Switzerland in Nigeria. I am happy to note that all participants, 50% of them females, completed the program successfully.
Also speaking at the event, Thomas Schneider, Consul General, Consulate of Switzerland in Lagos, said, “The joint training program between Switzerland and Nestlé Nigeria started ten years ago, the same year that the official migration partnership between Switzerland and Nigeria was established. I am pleased that over 140 young Nigerians have had the opportunity to participate in this high-quality training program, which will continue for the years to come”.
On his part, the Ogun State Commissioner for Youth and Sports Development, Dr Kehinde Oluwadare commended Nestlé’s interventions in the area of technical training which are aligned
with the agenda of the Ogun State Government to empower the youth. He encouraged the company to keep collaborating with all stakeholders to ensure more participation by the youth in Ogun State.
Ogun State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Prof. Abayomi Arigbagbu also commended Nestlé Nigeria PLC, for various projects in the education sector of the state. He acknowledged the positive impact of the employment opportunities for the young people as this, enables them to become valuable members of society. He was represented by Mr. Olugbenga
Kikisuhu, the Zonal Education Officer of Ado/Odo, Ota.
Reflecting on his experience during the training, best graduating student of Batch 5, Babajide Adebimpe, said, “Though I had a good grade in school, like many young Nigerians, I had very limited practical experience. The skills acquired through the technical training program and the consistent support from the instructors and coordinators have built my understanding and confidence. This has opened up a world of opportunities to me.”
“I commend all my colleagues for the teamwork, dedication and collective will to succeed despite the numerous challenges that confront us, including those imposed by the pandemic.”
“I want to say a big THANK YOU to Nestlé, the Swiss Consulate and all the partners supporting this program as I look forward to an exciting internship exposure in Switzerland.”