For Isuzu Philippines Corporation, it is not enough that it has helped finance an auto-mechanic training center in Tacloban, Leyte, and entrusted it to the care of the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA). It is not enough that it has helped pluck 89 deserving scholars out of poverty to give them an opportunity to carve out a career for themselves in the car industry.

No, as far as Isuzu is concerned, this philanthropic assistance won't be complete without it making sure that these scholars have actual jobs in the real world waiting for them when they graduate and receive their NC4 certification, currently the highest level in auto-mechanic training in the country. Hence, Isuzu organized on Aug. 4 an "open campus" event in which Isuzu dealers, service shop entrepreneurs and journalists personally visited the Isuzu-TESDA auto-mechanic training center to witness the young students at work. During the event, the scholars competently showed off their technical skills to their VIP guests-essentially their future employers.

"While it's good that we have established this training center for underprivileged youth, it will go to waste if we don't follow through and see to it that the scholars will have real jobs offered to them when they finish their training," explained IPC President Ryoji Yamazaki. "We really want these kids to succeed in life, so we brought along our business partners to check them out. After what they've seen, I believe they themselves are now convinced that the car technicians that we produce here are world-class."

The Isuzu-TESDA auto-mechanic training center was opened in 2008, offering a two-year technical course to qualified and deserving out-of-school students. Of the 89 scholars that it has on its roster now, 25 are already scheduled to graduate in November this year, ready to take on real challenges ahead.

"This open-campus event is our way of letting the automotive service industry know of the existence of a program devoted to train young people to become responsible and highly trained automotive service technicians," said TESDA Regional Director Engr. Juan Sabulao. "We hope that the students were able to prove that they have acquired the skills and competencies of a good automotive service technician over the almost two years that they have trained under the program."

The Isuzu-TESDA auto-mechanic training center is supported by Isuzu Motors Limited of Japan under its Heart and Smile Project, and by Plan Philippines. The program aims to train young people deserving of help, and bestow upon them a whole array of skills and competencies identified in the qualification standards of TESDA for automotive service technicians.