Dechen Dolkar  

The first time Kinzang Thinley came to Thimphu was after completing class 12 last year to apply for a job in the armed force.

But this time, he is here, en route to Thailand for his on-the-job training. He leaves next week.

He comes from one of the remote villages in Pemagatshel, Chimoong gewog. The 20-year-old, who is also the eldest child in the family, could not qualify for further studies. He then applied for the skill development programme in basic landscape design training of the labour ministry.

Kinzang Thinley completed three months of basic landscape training from TTI-Chumey in July this year along with seven other students.

The program started last year in the technical training institute and the eight students are the first batch.

With the personal initiative of Venus Pugdeekong, master trainer, three companies in Thailand, Moss Studio Co. Ltd., 1819 Company Ltd, and Amsuwan Company Ltd offered OJT to six youths out of the eight for two months.

These companies are Landscape, Architecture and Urban design firm based in Bangkok, Thailand and have proposed to provide benefits to the Bhutanese participants during their OJT.

They will be provided with a common apartment, a monthly allowance of Thai Baht 5,000 by Moss Studio and 1819 Company, a daily allowance of Thai Baht 200 and free lunch on working days by Omsuwan Company Ltd.

Kinzang Thinley wants to return home with the skills and share his knowledge and experience with the TTIs.

He aspires to become an entrepreneur since there are lots of opportunities in designing.

His trainer, Venus Pugdeekong, said that if trainees were interested to pursue further studies in landscape design, they would explore scholarships.

MoLHR’s skill development program coordinator, Namgay Wangmo said that trainees were selected on a first-come-first-served basis. “This is a new course and it will be part of the training in TTIs.”

The second batch is expected to leave in October.

After completing the OJT, participants will have to serve for two years in the country.

She said that some may be employed in some companies in Thailand.

The round-trip airfare and VISA expenses are borne by STEP-UP Project through the ADB.

The participants also attended a two-week basic entrepreneurship course.