Afro young man in job interview - Skills for Employability
Skills for Employability

Skills for Employability supports partnerships that focus on developing education and training programmes to meet the needs of local and global industry.

There is an urgent global need to invest substantial resources into employer-led technical education programmes – we need to address the growing skills gap that stifles economic growth and hampers entrepreneurial activities around the world.

As part of the British Council’s engagement in education, vocational training, youth and entrepreneurship, we are committed to supporting education and training systems that are better able to respond to market demands. Skills for Employability does this by bringing together international agencies, governments, employers, educators and students from the UK and the world through seminars, conferences, competitions and collaboration projects.

Building successful partnerships

To date, globally, we have facilitated 70 partnerships that have increased employer engagement, encouraged entrepreneurship, facilitated student exchanges and developed new qualifications and quality assurance systems.

We are working with three local partners: the National Training Agency (NTA), National Centre for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD) and the Ministry of Tertiary Education and Skills Training (TEST) to:

  • help raise the profile of technical training and skills development
  • encourage stakeholders in the private sector to get involved in vocational training programmes
  • introduce local entrepreneurs, managers, employees and policy-makers to successful employer-led technical education strategies adopted by businesses and regulatory agencies in the UK.

Skills seminar series

The British Council is hosted four skill seminars between September 2013 and February 2014 under the title ‘Technical Education and Skills – The Global Currency of the 21st Century’.  For each of these seminars, a diverse group of Caribbean delegates were selected to join colleagues from around the world to discuss tried-and-tested approaches to vocational training.

One of the first to attend was Beverly Beckles, CEO of the National Centre for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD):

NCPD is involved in vocational training and employment for persons with disabilities in Trinidad and Tobago. Participating in the Employer Engagement and Apprenticeships seminar provided me with information on how the apprenticeship programme works in the UK; the role of the employer engaged in apprenticeships in different sectors; and the opportunity for networking.  The most important challenge for NCPD is securing jobs for graduates in a society where there is no legislative framework for the rights of persons with disabilities. The model of employers working in partnership to develop ready skills is an approach that can be tailored and applied in Trinidad and Tobago and which will be explored by NCPD.

See also