Go Youth! National Skills Forum for Youth Engagement and Innovation

TVET Authority, in collaboration with the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) of Australia, held a national forum of stakeholders on 1 February, 2017.   The forum titled “Go Youth! National Skills Forum for Youth Engagement and Innovation”, was held at Asaree Hall of SHE Building. The Chief Guest of the opening ceremony of the forum was Minister of Education Dr. Aishath Shiham.

Go Youth National Forum was a culmination of deliberations occurred while a group of 9 Maldivians completed an Australia Awards Fellowship “Building Capacity to Address Unemployment: Workforce Development and Planning and Fostering Innovations (Maldives)” in Australia from 7 November, 2016 to 2 December, 2016. The national forum was an effort to strengthen the links between various stakeholders involved in TVET trainings in the Maldives. They include industry bodies, employers, government agencies, schools, civil societies as well as youth.

At the opening ceremony, Minister of Education delivered a speech, emphasising the government’s pledge for job creation and youth engagement. Minister also, acknowledged the role of various stakeholders in delivering current TVET programmes. She also acknowledged the importance of engaging with stakeholders and usefulness such gatherings of stakeholders.

Participants of forum included some industry bodies such as MACI and major employers such as STO, MACL, MTCC, FENAKA and MIFCO, some schools and civil societies and private NGOs as well as some Registered Training Organisations (RTO’s.), The forum was a success in the sense it provided a platform for all stakeholders to discuss about issues and provide ideas for youth engagement and collaboration with industries to strengthen TVET system.

Participants were divided into three groups to have thematic focus groups discussions on (1) Innovation and entrepreneurship –RTOs, (2) Need for Improving Competency Standards for Better Training Quality for the Youth – Industry and TVET Providers Partnerships and (3) Dhasvaru / School TVET Programs. Each group held discussions and presented their group findings. Group findings are expected to be compiled to form a blueprint for action with regards to youth engagement and innovation in the Madlives.

The forum was facilitated by Manager of International Projects Unit of QUT Mr. Nelson Saqlangsang, Director of the Office of Commercial Services of QUT Colin Melvin and Australia Awards Fellows from the Maldives, including State Minister of Education Mr. Ahmed Shafeeu, who wrapped up the forum and Chief Executive Officer of TVET Authority Dr. Abdul Hannan Waheed, who introduced the forum in the opening ceremony. Mr. Colin Melvin of QUT and State Minister of Education Mr. Ahmed Shafeeu distributed certificates to participants at the end of the forum.