GIS - Dec 11, 2012: “The future of the country is in its youth and it is important to educate and empower them so that they can carry out their roles as proud Mauritians”. The President of the Republic, Mr Rajkeswur Purryag, made this statement this morning at the launching ceremony of the National Institute for Civic Education (NICE) pilot project at Sir Abdool Raman Osman State College in Phoenix.
In his address, the President pointed out that the programme aims to anchor core Mauritian values among the youths and engage them in positive activities for their personal development. He said that in an increasingly competitive world, the youngsters need to know what their priorities are.
As part of the nation-building process, it is important for the Mauritian population to continually take effort to enhance the harmony and unity amongst its people, taking into account the diversity of its population, said Mr Purryag. In the wake of the globalisation phenomenon whereby the young people are increasingly exposed to external influences, there is need to instill core values amongst the youths, inculcate healthy habits and engage them in meaningful activities so as to widen their horizon towards positive development, he recalled.
The President further highlighted the need to give the young people an education which is appropriate to sustain the economic development of the country. Science and technology are the key to development, he said, and on that score, he exhorted students to opt for science subjects. While deploring that only 30% of students choose science and technology, the President appealed to the education sector to take necessary steps to stimulate students’ interest in science.
NICE Pilot Project
Around 200 Form IV students of both gender aged 15 to 16 years in state and private secondary schools in Mauritius and Rodrigues are participating in the programme. The pilot project is being held from 11 to 20 December 2012.
From 11 to 15 December 2012, the activity-based programme will be held at Sir Abdool Raman Osman State College and the gymnasium of the Ministry of Youth and Sports in Phoenix. After which the participants will be placed on 17 and 18 December in an organisation to enable them familiarise themselves in a core sector. The programme will wind its activities with a two-day residential seminar at the Pointe Jérome Youth Training Centre on 19 and 20 December.
The programme will revolve around four themes: individual, community, society and country. The component ‘individual’ comprises leadership, creativity, healthy lifestyle and entrepreneurship skills. The theme ‘community’ includes unity in diversity and promotion of harmonious living. Another component ‘society’ relates to discipline, societal norms and responsibility whereas the theme ‘country’ focuses on history, democracy and nation building.
A Tracks Programme will also be carried in the second week of the pilot phase during which students will be sent for placement in several organisations/companies in different fields such as hospitality, environment, technical/vocational training, IT/Media, agriculture, SMEs, public service, uniformed services and social services.