Rural youth to get IT education though new program funded by Mahapola

A course on Information Technology applications and a program to disseminate IT awareness using a mobile computer laboratory was launched yesterday by the International Centre for Geo-informatics Applications and Training in collaboration with the Mahapola Higher Education Scholarship Trust Fund, in order to mark the 67th birth anniversary of late Lalith Athulathmudali, the Founder of the Mahapola Scholarship Scheme, a press release from the Ministry of Commerce and Consumer Affairs said.

The new Information Technology course would focus on providing knowledge on using geo-informatics, a coupled system containing the latest advancement of information technology and the management information system. Satellite Remote Sensing and GPS (tracking systems) can easily identify and map spatially distributed resources, the release said.

Geographic Information System (GIS) enables such information to be stored in a geographically referenced manner, enabling better planning and management of resource utilisation incorporating geographical features in the decision making on a map based system, the release added.

Meanwhile, the new mobile computer laboratory which is equipped with 10 computers which is backed by a equal number of uninterrupted power supply units, a printer and a scanner would focus on providing knowledge on various IT applications to students and interested people.

This state-of-the-art mobile bus which is called as "Mobitech" has the ability to cater to 20 students at a time, the statement said.

Both this new initiatives are ready to cater to a wide audience which would include university and school students, working people, unemployed graduates and the public in general.

The new programs were inaugurated recently at a ceremony held at the University of Moratuwa with the participation of the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Ravi Karunanayake, who was the chief guest at the occasion.

Karunanayake said that knowledge in the field of Information Technology is a vital factor in the present world and said these new programmes would focus on providing IT knowledge to the rural youth who do not have much access to the field of IT. He also said the new mobile computer laboratory would conduct programs in rural areas that would range from ten to fifteen days.