Regional Bureau for West & Central Africa Education Newsletter, March 2022

Higher education has many advantages for refugees, both in terms of personal development, socio-professional integration, and self-reliance, and in terms of their contribution to the society of their country of asylum and/or origin. However, higher education opportunities remain very limited for most young refugees worldwide, particularly in West and Central Africa.

UNHCR is committed to achieving enrolment of 15% of young refugee women and men in higher education by the year 2030 – the 15by30 target. Based on current population data, achieving 15% enrolment in 2030 will mean that approximately half a million young refugee women and men will be participating in an enriching academic life, compared to only 90,000 today.

To support progress towards the 15by30 target, UNHCR has developed a strategic roadmap built around five higher education pathways, to offer strategies for optimizing, coordinating, and expanding opportunities: (i) national university enrolment; (ii) technical and vocational education and training (TVET); (iii) connected higher education programmes; (iv) tertiary education scholarships; and (v) complementary education pathways for admission to third countries.

Among initiatives to improve refugees’ access to higher education, connected learning holds great promise for durable solutions for refugee youth.

Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees

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