Mona Business School using digital solutions to address youth unemployment in Haiti

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Mona Business School using digital solutions to address youth unemployment in Haiti

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

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ST ANDREW, Jamaica — The Mona School of Business and Management (MSBM), is collaborating with regional and international partners to research and address the challenge of the sustainable delivery of online education and digital skills training, the institution has said.

The project, funded by the Government of Canada, targets young Haitian women in both urban and rural settings, 300 of whom will be trained between 2018 and 2019 and assisted in securing online employment opportunities in overseas markets.

Titled “Ayitic Goes Global: Empowering Women through Digital Markets”, the project is a multi-dimensional initiative that will provide customised training in digital/data skills and assist in securing remote jobs in overseas markets through the establishment of a local outsourcing enterprise that congregates graduates and an active outreach strategy with the Haitian Diaspora to identify remote online job opportunities.

MSBM, a founding member of the Caribbean Open Institute (COI), is part of a multi-partner coalition that includes: Latin American and Caribbean Internet Addresses Registry (LACNIC), Slashroots Foundation, and l'Ecole Supérieure d'Infotronique D'Haïti (ESIH), the local partner in Haiti.

MSBM manages the COI component of the project through a Research Grant of CA$280,000 (J$28 million) from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada, and will focus on the design and development of competency-based, highly interactive, responsive, and multilingual eLearning objects that explore the limits of “technology-enabled pedagogical innovations in resource-constrained environments”.

Dr Maurice McNaughton, Director at the Centre of Excellence for IT-Enabled Innovation at the Mona School of Business and Management regards the project as an important catalyst for a larger “Caribbean School of Data” strategic initiative that is seeking to build a comprehensive and sustainable "data literacy" program and a stronger data culture across the Caribbean.

The current focus is on the development of competencies in a range of technical vocational skills in high demand internationally to ensure meaningful and sustainable employment outcomes for the young Haitian women beneficiaries, long after the programme's completion. The first cohort of 50 trainees are expected to commence in April 2018, however McNaughton is already eyeing application opportunities beyond the project setting.

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