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International TVET Youth Forum gets underway in Abu Dhabi with the theme ‘Think Future’

15 August 2017

H.E. Mubarak Saeed Al Shamsi, Director General of ACTVET, and 150 UAE students at the launch event for the inaugural International TVET Youth Forum

The inaugural International TVET Youth Forum was introduced in the UAE today with a launch event in Abu Dhabi.

In partnership with WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017, Tuesday’s event at NYU Abu Dhabi brought together 150 UAE students involved in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET). Another 150 young professionals were invited to join the event live online from around the world.

Tuesday’s event marks the beginning of the International TVET Youth Forum. 300 Youth from more than 60 countries will work online until October before coming together for the live forum to discuss the future of TVET education. The young people will collaborate and share ideas on topics such as Industry 4.0, Entrepreneurship, Green Economy, Innovation, Happiness and Tolerance, and Global Citizenship. 

Matching the TVET Youth Forum’s theme of ‘Think Future’, the kick-off event gave the attending students the opportunity to take part in team building activities, team brainstorms and to discuss skills of the future. 

Tuesday’s event revealed that the result of the International Youth Forum will be a Youth Declaration on the future of skills, which will be presented to global ministers at the upcoming WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017 Competition. The declaration will focus on how today’s youth can contribute to solving global challenges and how the TVET sector in particular can have a positive impact. 

H.E. Mubarak Saeed Al Shamsi, Director General of ACTVET, said during his meeting with the students that ACTVET had organized this forum with a number of objectives, including the desire of young people to promote the future of vocational education and achieve positive change.

He added, "The continuous development of business sectors around the world and the remarkable shift in the nature of the demand for labour make it imperative for young people to continuously develop different professional skills that will enable them to enter and compete in the labour market of today and the future."

H.E. Mubarak Al Shamsi emphasized the importance of developing technical and vocational skills in supporting peoples’ progress and realizing major global objectives. "Young people stand today face-to-face with the continuous changes of rapid technological development, which in turn contributes to the development of new job markets and professions, and impacts the skills that are required globally."

“According to the World Economic Forum, majority of primary school children will end up working in jobs that don’t exist today. At the same time, relevant and high quality vocational training in itself can be a solution to resolving many of the world’s most pressing challenges: from global youth unemployment to environmental sustainability. Youth skills development plays a central role in the larger global quest to meet Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development. Similarly, at a local level, Abu Dhabi is also committed to equipping its youth to meet the goals of Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 and UAE Vision 2021.” AS a result of the inspiring conference and Brainstorming sessions ACTVET Director General Mr. Al Shamsi launched the Youth Ideas platform @YI_UAE for the purpose of empowering the youth to gather and share their ideas and contributions with the public audience. 

Mr Al Shamsi also took the opportunity to introduce Dr Mohammed Alzaabi PHD, an expert at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre. A graduate of Khalifa University Abu Dhabi with a PHD in Artificial Intelligence and Robotics. Dr Alzaabi gave a keynote address on ‘future transformations and how today’s youth can develop the skills to thrive in new and disrupted environments’.

WorldSkills is the global hub for vocational skills. Every two years it hosts the world championships of skills where the world’s best talents compete in more than 50 skill competitions across six sectors. These competitions and the WorldSkills event inspires thousands of young people to take up vocational careers.

In October this year, the 44th edition of the globally renowned event will be held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and organized by ACTVET.

WorldSkills Abu Dhabi 2017 takes place 15-18 October at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC). The week-long event will welcome more than 1,300 competitors from 58 countries as they compete across 51 skills.

WorldSkills Competitions have taken place around the world – from South America to Europe, Asia, Oceania and now the Middle East. From handicrafts to multi-skilled careers in the industry and technology sectors, WorldSkills has showcased skills to millions of young people during its nearly 70-year history.