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17 November 2022

Edinburgh College celebrates success of TVET partnership project with colleges in Malawi

Edinburgh College recently celebrated the successful end to a fruitful technical and vocational education training (TVET) mentoring partnership project working with a group of four colleges in Malawi.

The Vocational Education and Training (VET) Toolbox mentoring partnership, funded by the European Union, and managed by the British Council, saw UK institutions partnered with clusters of technical and vocational colleges in countries around the world to improve the effectiveness of national vocational education and training to respond to labour market needs and enhance employability for all.

In partnership with the British Council Malawi, a project closure event was held in Lilongwe and attended by representatives engaged in TVET capacity building, including Edinburgh College and its Malawian partner colleges, the British Council, the Malawi Ministry of Labour, Malawi TVET Authority, the National Youth Council and non-governmental organisations.

The College connected digitally to host a session celebrating the successes of its mentoring partnership project, and facilitated a discussion on the challenges, required support and next steps for TVET colleges in Malawi looking to develop their approach to employer engagement.

Enhancing employer engagement is a key focus for TVET colleges and national TVET systems across the world. The focus of this year’s partnerships is on employer engagement, and the use of employer networks for the improvement of teaching, learning and work-readiness; something which already sits at the heart of Edinburgh College’s strategic approach. Our College works with around 2,000 local and national employers in a range of ways, from co-designed curriculum to supporting employers to re-skill and upskill their workforce. Sharing this expertise and best practice internationally, and learning from our project partners, is an important opportunity to enhance what we do in this space.
Sarah Gore, Edinburgh College International Business Manager

Working closely with leadership and management teams from its four partner colleges in Malawi, the College delivered a series of workshops in response to their specific needs. Workshops included sessions on Collecting Employer Data and Engaging Stakeholders, Setting Up and Managing an Employer Engagement Board, Leadership and Governance, Engaging Employers in Curriculum Development, Work Placements and Work Readiness. The sessions were led by a range of the  College’s Executive Management, International and Curriculum teams.

During the project closure event, attendees heard from one of Edinburgh College’s project partners, Mr Mbasa Mwawembe, Acting Principal of Mangochi Community Technical College. Mr Mwawembe delivered a presentation together with one of their new partner employers, ESCOM. Mr Mwawembe spoke of wide-ranging achievements through participation in the VET Toolbox partnership project including setting up stakeholder committees, improving approaches and levels of engagement with employers, increasing numbers and quality of student attachments or work placements, instigating co-curricular design with ESCOM, and signing new MOUs with key employers, all working towards better outcomes for students.

Edinburgh College is delighted with the impact and developments made possible through participation in the VET Toolbox partnership project, both in Malawi and in Edinburgh. The project adds to the College’s growing portfolio of TVET consultancy and capacity building projects.