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Technical and vocational education and training

Technical and vocational education and training (TVET) includes formal, nationally accredited training, diploma courses and skills development across a wide range of occupational fields, including production, services, and livelihoods. The approach caters to children and youth as well as adults, offering professional development, upskilling, and reskilling opportunities.

UNHCR's Refugee Education 2030 strategy highlights TVET's critical role in enabling learners to achieve sustainable futures.

Our approach

To enhance refugee inclusion in quality TVET programs, UNHCR collaborates with:

UNHCR facilitates refugee participation in these programmes, particularly geared towards green and digital skills, via DAFI scholarships aligning with current industry demands and supporting economic inclusion. UNHCR relies on the sustained and substantial commitment of host countries, Ministries, education service providers, industry and private sector partners to identify, create and include refugees in labour market-aligned TVET opportunities.

At the Global Refugee Forum (GRF) in 2023, 53 pledges were made to enhance and expand refugees' access to TVET. These pledges emphasize the transition from education to meaningful employment, allowing refugees to support their families and contribute to host communities.

Work-based learning and apprenticeships

Work-based learning in higher education means integrating academic learning with practical workplace experience. It encompasses internships, apprenticeships, and dual study programs. These provide students with real-world skills and enhance their employability.

Apprenticeships at the higher education level combine on-the-job training with academic study. This allows students to gain practical experience, earn a salary, and work towards a formal qualification simultaneously.

UNHCR has partnerships with the private sector and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which support refugee participation in TVET programmes that:

  • are market-responsive
  • offer practical experience through apprenticeships
  • improve employment prospects.

Global labour-market trends and vocational education

The demand for vocational education at the tertiary level is driven by several global labour-market trends, including:

  • rapid technological advancements
  • digitalization
  • the growing emphasis on sustainable development.

Sectors with increasing demand for higher vocational education include:

  • renewable energy and sustainability
  • ICT and digitalization
  • advanced manufacturing and robotics
  • healthcare and social services
  • creative industries and design
  • agriculture and sustainable development
  • hospitality and tourism.

With a strong focus on quality, UNHCR and partners aim to:

  • enhance the overall impact of educational initiatives for refugees
  • align training and skills development with industry and labour market demands
  • ensure that programs offer refugees meaningful and lasting benefits.