Life-skills classes help more than 400 BTEC-3 students to succeed in their academic programs, and in their daily lives

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BTEC-3 students participate in an anti-harassment activity during their life-skills class
© UNESCO

In one classroom, students get into groups to carry out an awareness activity about harassment. In another, students conduct mock job interviews on their classmates, giving valuable feedback. These classes are a required part of the BTEC-3 component of the UNESCO “Youth Skills Development and Mentoring Project in Jordan” implemented in partnership with Al-Quds College and generously funded by the EU. A vital element of the program, the life-skills classes have helped the students with their psychosocial development, preparing them to take on the challenge of the academic portion of the accredited skills program. Many students in the BTEC-3 program have praised “life-skills” as one of their favorite classes. They report that the class not only helps them cope with their new learning environment, but that it has improved their personalities and their social lives. “I especially like the Life-skills class,” says Ala, a 20 year old student majoring in Interior Design. “In Syria I had to deal...

In one classroom, students get into groups to carry out an awareness activity about harassment. In another, students conduct mock job interviews on their classmates, giving valuable feedback. These classes are a required part of the BTEC-3 component of the  UNESCO “Youth Skills Development and Mentoring Project in Jordan” implemented in partnership with Al-Quds College and generously funded by the EU. A vital element of the program, the life-skills classes have helped the students with their psychosocial development, preparing them to take on the challenge of the academic portion of the accredited skills program. 

Many students in the BTEC-3 program have praised “life-skills” as one of their favorite classes. They report that the class not only helps them cope with their new learning environment, but that it has improved their personalities and their social lives.  “I especially like the Life-skills class,” says Ala, a 20 year old student majoring in Interior Design. “In Syria I had to deal with the war and the death of my fiancé. Life-skills is helping me to cope.” Sana, another student who is majoring in Hospitality stated, “I like Life-skills, the teacher is very interactive. Now I am more confident. I have improved myself.”

The “Youth Skills Development and Mentoring” project is part of the larger, “Sustaining Quality Education and Promoting Skills Development for Young Syrian Refugees in Jordan”, through which the UNESCO Amman Office is implementing a 4.3 million Euro project funded by the European Union to sustain quality education and promote skills development opportunities for young Syrian refugees and Jordanian youth impacted by the humanitarian crisis. This project aims to address the challenges posed by the continuing influx of Syrian refugees on the quality of education in Jordan. The project builds upon UNESCO’s experience and commitment to strengthening national capacities of the Education system.

 The “Youth Skills Development and Mentoring Project in Jordan”, of which the BTEC-3 diploma is a key component, will provide opportunities for 1,300 youth to participate in education programs ranging from three months to 1 year. Aside from the diploma program, youth in the Zaatari camp and in the host communities will have the opportunity to participate in structured youth mentorship programs culminating in a community outreach project for Zaatari’s youth, and in a business incubator for Jordanian youth in the host communities.

A highlight of the project, the one-year internationally accredited BTEC-3 program offers diplomas in hospitality, art and design, the built environment and construction, surveying engineering, creative media production, graphic design and interior design. “I am currently working in a restaurant. Now I am studying Hospitality, and I am sure this certificate will help me get promoted and progress in my career,” says Naour, 23. The BTEC-3 program will ultimately benefit more than 400 Syrian and Jordanian youth, leaving students not only with marketable skills, but with hope for their future.