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CICan supports CARICOM Regional TVET Strategy Strengthening skills for employment and competitiveness

September 23, 2014 – Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is pleased to join with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the Caribbean Association of National Training Agencies (CANTA) to launch the CARICOM Regional Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Strategy for Workforce Development and Economic Competitiveness. The strategy is an ambitious approach designed to improve education for employment and strengthen economic competitiveness across the Caribbean Community.

“This new Strategy places pivotal importance on our region’s human capital as we seek to forge a viable Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME) with the free movement of skilled and certified citizens – workers within the market place,” said Dr. Douglas Slater, CARICOM Secretariat Assistant Secretary General for Human and Social Development. “By guiding Member States in the development of the critical skills needed to attract and sustain decent job-creation from foreign and domestic investments, given the imperative of developing a highly skilled workforce.”

The CARICOM Regional TVET Strategy was developed through extensive consultations involving more than 350 stakeholders from CARICOM Member States and is being welcomed by the private sector and education professionals, as well as labour and development agencies.

“This Strategy is an important tool that will guide TVET apex bodies and policy makers as they introduce technical training throughout the education system and certify skilled citizens with the CVQ,” said Dr. Wayne Wesley, Chair of the Caribbean Association of National Training Agencies (CANTA) and Executive Director of Jamaica’s HEART Trust/NTA. “We are pleased to have developed the policy and to work on behalf of member agencies to support its implementation.”

Funded through the generous investment of the Government of Canada and supported by the Colleges and Institutes Canada CARICOM Education for Employment Program (C-EFE), the CARICOM Regional TVET Strategy is already guiding action plans in member states to implement the Caribbean Vocational Qualification (CVQ) and strengthen delivery of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET).

“This Strategy for workforce development across the region is critical for economic growth within the context of the Caribbean Single Market Economy,” said Gérard Latulippe, Canadian High Commissioner to Trinidad and Tobago. “Our Canadian colleges and institutes are education leaders and key influences on the international stage. Colleges and Institutes Canada, or now as we know it, CICan, is helping the region create economic opportunities through education as well as supporting Canada’s brand around the globe.”

The development and launch of the Strategy were supported by CICan’s CARICOM Education for Employment Program and experts from several of its member institutions.

“Canadian colleges and institutes offer some of the world’s best education and we are honoured that the Caribbean Community looked to Canada for collaboration on this new strategy,” said Denise Amyot, President and CEO of CICan and Chair of the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics. “Regional prosperity and improved economic competitiveness depend on providing citizens with the education and skills needed to find employment and participate in society.”

To date, Colleges and Institutes Canada’s C-EFE program:

  • has sponsored the development of the CARICOM Regional TVET Strategy;
  • has developed a leadership program with the Association of Caribbean Tertiary Institutions for institutional managers delivering skills training;
  • has established 16 partnerships between Canadian and Caribbean institutions to improve or develop educational programs for the jobs of tomorrow in the region; and
  • is active in 12 countries, including: Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.


Left to right: Paul Brennan; Dr. Wayne Wesley, CANTA CEO/HEART Trust; Minister Karim, Trinidad;
Dr. Slater, CARICOM; Minister Thwaites, Jamaica; High Commissioner Latulippe, Trinidad

About the Association:

Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) is the national and international voice of Canada’s publicly supported colleges, institutes and polytechnics. The Association works with industry and social sectors to train 1.5 million learners of all ages and backgrounds at campuses serving over 3,000 urban, rural and remote communities in Canada. CICan operates in 29 countries via 13 offices around the world and is the secretariat for the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP). CICan President and CEO, Denise Amyot, is the Chair of the WFCP.

CICan is also part of the UNESCO-UNEVOC network and was designated as the pan-Canadian UNEVOC centre and lead for the North American Cluster of UNEVOC centres.

Download complete document:

CARICOM Regional TVET Strategy for Workforce Development and Economic Competitiveness

For more information:

Linda Cooke
C-EFE Regional Coordinator and Senior Technical Advisor
Colleges and Institutes Canada
(868) 347-0543

Shawn Dearn
Director of Communications and Information Services
Colleges and Institutes Canada
(613) 746-2222 Ext. 3123