“We don’t stop at the point when students are employable. We stop when they are employed.”

“We don’t stop at the point when students are employable. We stop when they are employed.”

Fit4Jobs Project Manager Manus Hanratty was invited by Telecentre Europe to their annual conference in Belgrade on 24th September, to speak on behalf of his organisation FIT Ltd and the Fit4Jobs project at the “Empowering youth for employability” session. Speaking on behalf of his own organisation but also the NGOs/non-profits currently leading the Fit4Jobs project pilots (in Greece, Spain, Portugal, Latvia and Lithuania), M. Hanratty started by saying that employability is hard to define because it often depends on who is defining it. Many young people who are unemployed even see employability as “a wall that stands between them and a good job.” They picture it as an obstacle they need to climb over. But breaking it down, employability is about knowledge, and competition and skills- and all these can be learned. Learning about how to design a good CV is only one example of the concrete skills present on the employability wall (see image 1 above). Often young people are not aware of the importance of such skills and unwritten “norms” in the world of work. This is why Fit4Jobs is all about putting the soft skills at the same level as hard or technical skills. Most importantly, Fit4jobs provides a holistic approach: finding someone who is young and unemployed and then taking them or her through the journey until they actually have a job. As he clearly pointed out, when going on this journey with young people is its crucial not to stop at the point when students are considered employable but rather when they are employed. ‘Employer engagement’ is now a buzz word in the world...
Youth employability in the spotlight in Belgrade

Youth employability in the spotlight in Belgrade

Each year FIT4Jobs project partner, Telecentre Europe, in its annual conference features a panel discussion where representatives of various stakeholder groups (private sectors, education, academia, civil society, etc.) look at an issue from different angles. This year the main conference panel in Belgrade will focus on youth employability. This is also a relevant topic for the FIT4Jobs project and the conference will bring together all the project partners, apart from organisations active in digital inclusion, skills and employablity. I-LINC “Empowering youth for employability” The panel that will take place on 24th September (day 1) in the afternoon will also be the occasion to launch I-LINC, a new stakeholder platform on the topic of Youth employability, funded by the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme. The platform will be an online and offline (events) environment for networking, participation and earning that will aim at boosting the employability and entrepreneurship capacities of young people. The I-LINC project consortium is led by Telecentre Europe and consists of three other key partners: Telefonica, the Spanish telecommunication giant, European Schoolnet (EUN) representing the education sector and the Technical University of Dortmund (TUDO), that brings the research dimension to the platform. The I-LINC platform will be officially launched after the panel discussion by the Project Manager Laurentiu Bunescu. Organisations and individuals interested in discussing and solving problems linked to youth unemployment are invited to join the platform and to attend the live panel discussion. Confirmed speakers in the panel involve researcher Maria Garrido from the University of Washington’s TASCHA group. Manus Hanratty, FIT4Jobs Project Manager will represent his organisation, the well-known Irish non-profit FIT Ltd. that...