NEW CAMPUS. Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson (center) leads the groundbreaking rites for PHP135-million Negros Occidental Language and Information Technology Center (NOLITC) Global Campus in Hacienda Manaul, Barangay Matab-ang, Talisay City on Wednesday (Aug. 19, 2020). He is joined by Mayor Neil Lizares III (4th from right), Ma. Cristina Orbecido (3rd from right), NOLITC vocational school administrator, and other provincial and city government officials. (Photo courtesy of PIO Negros Occidental)

BACOLOD CITY – The Negros Occidental Language and Information Technology Center (NOLITC) Global Campus will rise in neighboring Talisay City by 2022.

The groundbreaking in Hacienda Manaul, Barangay Matab-ang was led by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and other government officials, including host Mayor Neil Lizares III on Wednesday.

“The new NOLITC campus will provide more quality training that will lead to more employment opportunities for more Negrenses, including the out-of-school youth, college drop-outs, high school graduates, and unemployed college graduates,” Lacson said.

The P135-million Global Campus, which will be built on a 2.5-hectare land donated by the Montinola family, will be the future home of the now 11-year-old NOLITC located at the Paglaum Sports Complex here.

Accredited by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA), the first and only government-run language and IT school in Western Visayas has been offering courses on call center training, English language proficiency, 2D animation, and visual graphic design, digital literacy, software development, and medical billing and coding.

Lacson said some 6,000 Negrenses have trained at NOLITC, of which 85 percent have been hired after graduation.

Ma. Cristina Orbecido, NOLITC vocational school administrator, told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Thursday that the groundbreaking for the new campus indicates that NOLITC remains resilient despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) pandemic.

“The delay in the construction was indeed a blessing in disguise because it allowed the engineers to redesign the campus to comply with the new normal,” she said.

Orbecido said that with the sustained information technology-business process management (IT-BPM) market, the NOLITC Global Campus is seen to thrive further as a talent hub supporting the human resource requirements of the industry.

“We also see that it will attract more locators in the province’s Third District,” she added.

Lizares said the presence of NOLITC Global Campus will boost the aim of Talisay City to become the next Smart City.

The new campus was initially set to be constructed on a Capitol-owned land in Talisay occupied by a public high school’s sports oval, but the plan drew protest and Lacson eventually approved its relocation.

Earlier this month, the NOLITC opened 760 scholarship slots for qualified Negrenses interested to enroll in full online training for various courses.

These included 650 grants available under the Negros Occidental Training for Work Scholarship program funded under the Gender and Development Fund and 110 slots are provided by the TESDA through the Training for Work Scholarship program and Universal Access to Quality Tertiary Education program. (PNA)