The European Vocational Skills Week 2020 will take place digitally across the European Union from 9 to 13 November 2020. It is organised by the European Commission in partnership with the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, as part of the German Presidency of the Council of the EU. This fifth edition encourages people of all ages to discover their talent and develop their skills in line with labour market needs through vocational education and training (VET), an important sector for economic and social recovery in the COVID-19 context.
The focus of the 2020 edition will be on higher VET (post-upper secondary school level) and VET skills for green and digital transitions. Promoting digital learning platforms, establishing a culture of lifelong and continuous education and implementing sustainable VET structures are key issues for the Commission and the German Presidency.
Nicolas Schmit, Commissioner for Jobs and Social Rights, said: “Labour markets need creative brains, and skilled hands to master the digital and green transitions. What Vocational Education and Training (VET) does is train talents. Talents that can make a career for themselves in our societies and contribute to our economies. It has never been more important for VET providers, companies, trade unions, governments and other partners to deliver relevant skills for lifelong learning. I am convinced that VET can play a crucial role in the recovery.”
“Excellent vocational education and training plays a significant role in both Germany and Europe in terms of continuing to ensure our prosperity in the future,” highlights Anja Karliczek, German Federal Minister of Education and Research. “We want to strengthen VET cooperation in Europe, learn from one another and make VET fit for the future. We took the first steps towards achieving this goal at the Informal Meeting of Education Ministers in Osnabrück together with the EU member states, the European Commission and European social partners. I am delighted that we are opening the European Vocational Skills Week today. This year’s event has been organized by the European Commission in cooperation with my ministry, the German Federal Education Ministry. We want to make the most of this opportunity to shine a spotlight on the benefits of vocational education and training in Europe.”
As part of the European Vocational Skills Week 2020, local, regional and national organisations from the EU and beyond are hosting virtual events and activities, emphasising the benefits of VET and its crucial role in lifelong learning. They are providing young learners with the initial skills they need for a fulfilling career and creating the means for adults to build on existing skills (upskill) and develop new skills (reskill) throughout their lives. Over 781 associated events and activities have already been registered in 38 countries, reaching more than 1.6 million people.
European Vocational Skills Week Ambassadors and Awards for VET Excellence 2020
This year, 28 Ambassadors representing 25 countries are supporting the European Vocational Skills Week campaign by spreading the word about vocational skills. Nominated by the European Commission, they are inspiring examples of the benefits of VET. Their remarkable achievements demonstrate the advantages VET can offer not only to young people but to anyone considering new learning opportunities.