Skip to main content

11 May 2017

Stepping On The Skills Accelerator In Africa

The mission to promote and enhance skills among young Africans has been highlighted at the inaugural “International Skills Excellence Forum” which was held from 2 to 5 May, 2017 in Livingstone, Zambia.

The mission to promote and enhance skills among young Africans has been highlighted at the inaugural “International Skills Excellence Forum” which was held from 2 to 5 May, 2017 in Livingstone, Zambia.

Key stakeholders from education, industry, and government in Africa visited the conference and mini skills competition which showcased the importance of skills for the career prospects of the continent’s youth. WorldSkills also held its Board of Directors meeting in Africa for the first time. Given the presence of WorldSkills Board of Directors, the participants, including the Minister and Permanent Secretary of Higher Education, had the opportunity to learn about WorldSkills and its impact on the global and national levels. 

David Chakonta, the Director General of the Technical Education, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training Authority (TEVETA) – the parent institution for WorldSkills Zambia said the highlight of forum was “the way it brought together local and international stakeholders who advocate for the skills of excellence.”

He added, “The Competition went very well, and a memorable highlight was that the students excelling in skills were being able to personally shake hands with Simon Bartley, President of WorldSkills, and the Minister of Higher Education, Nkandu Luo.”

Mr Chakonta said he hoped the inaugural forum would go towards improving skills standards across the country, pointing out that there are number of ongoing projects underway to boost skills development; including introducing students to simulated work environment where trainees are able to practice their vocation under realistic workplace conditions.

WorldSkills Zambia, which was established in 2014, hosted the event under the theme ‘Partnerships for Industrialization, Job Creation, and Sustainable Skills Development’ and as part of the Skills Development in Africa project, which connects WorldSkills Members, Global Partners, international organizations, NGOs, and others to create and facilitate new opportunities for young people in Africa to develop new skills.

As the Vice President for Special Affairs who has the lead on the development in Africa from WorldSkills Board, San-Quei Lin, explained, WorldSkills Zambia is one of six WorldSkills Members in Africa, and prides itself on being “very proactive in improving the country’s Technical and Vocational Education and Training system and raising skills standards”.