Skills for Success® Programs

Skills for Success students in a park overlooking a lake.

Participants enjoy a morning in nature at the famous Central Park in Manhattan, New York City, October 2021, Professional Development Immersion Program

Skills for Success® is an employability skills training program developed and implemented by Amideast, a leading U.S. educational, professional, and cultural development organization in the Middle East and North Africa. Skills for Success® is designed to improve the job entry prospects for high school and university graduates from the West Bank and Gaza. 

Since 2019, Legacy International has partnered with Amideast to develop and implement a variety of supplemental programs for Skills for Success® participants that help continue their leadership and professional development for the global workforce. Our programs help to address the skills mismatch that underlies the high rates of youth unemployment in the MENA region. As partners in programming, we work together on Skills for Success® to foster global communication and contribute to the region’s economic development. 

Participants posing in front of the MLK memorial in Washington, DC.

Participants learn about U.S. and global history, culture, and civil rights at the U.S. National Mall Monuments, Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial in Washington, DC, October 2021, Professional Development Immersion Program

The initiative is funded by the United States Embassy – Jerusalem and Amideast and is administered by Legacy International. 

Over 140 Palestinian young professionals between 20 and 33 years old have participated in Amideast Skills for Success® programs through Legacy International both virtually and in-person in the U.S., with different professional themes for each session: 

Professional Development Immersion Program

A delegation of Skills for Success participants from Jerusalem and the West Bank participate in the ten-day Professional Development Immersion Program in-person in Washington, D.C. and New York, N.Y. While in the U.S., the participants engage in a dynamic series of structured learning experiences, training sessions, and hands-on career development and cultural immersion, which provide the opportunity to examine their personal and professional goals as well as the qualities, skills, and attributes that define leadership in the U.S., the global workplace, and in the Palestinian cultural contexts. The students share their culture and learn from Americans in a range of immersive settings representing the U.S.’ diverse makeup. 

Sessions include facilitated and unstructured conversations, targeted training sessions, meetings with U.S. professionals, site visits and presentations, job shadows, volunteer service events, and informal conversations with Americans from all walks of life. Through guided sessions, guest speakers, and curated outings in the nation’s capital, participants learn about U.S. history, society, and governance, professional skill development, and leadership impacts on societies and the world. Participants also experience a three-day immersion in New York, N.Y. with a focus on further exploration of U.S. history, society, governance, and the arts. Their New York visit ends with a Global Impact day where they visit the United Nations headquarters and engage with a variety of U.N. experts to learn more about the U.N.’s role and impact on a global scale, professional opportunities, and the work of key Palestinian employees and diplomats. View the 2021 Professional Development Immersion Program video to learn more about the experience. 

Participants sitting around a long office table.

Participants learn about the role and work of the United Nations and ways they can get involved in youth global ambassador work in Palestine during Global Impact Day, New York, N.Y. October 2021, Professional Development Immersion Program

Virtual Entrepreneurship Immersion Program

Over six weeks, emerging Skills for Success entrepreneurs from Gaza, Palestine gain the fundamental skills, knowledge, resources, and networks to grow into successful entrepreneurs and, ultimately, design and launch an entrepreneurial venture with a focus on creating employment and scalable social impact in Gaza. One of the main goals is to reduce the 50% unemployment rate among participants (reflective of the overall unemployment rate in Gaza) and of the 73% of participants who have little to know training in entrepreneurship before starting the program.

Program session topics include:

  • Global Futures
  • Vision & Design Thinking
  • Entrepreneurship Foundations
  • Business Model Canvas
  • Business Plan Development
  • Finance and Funding
  • Marketing and Pitching

These sessions are designed to give participants greater access to engage with U.S. and global experts from a variety of perspectives. Trainers, coaches, staff, and judges with entrepreneurship expertise, including half with direct experience in Palestine, support the participants throughout their process of learning about and becoming entrepreneurs.

Participants complete approximately three hours of independent learning and assignments online each week on Legacy’s Talent Learning Management System (LMS), including readings, videos, discussion board topics, or other small activities that prepare them for two weekly group sessions. The weekly facilitator-led sessions take place via Zoom where participants engage with their colleagues and subject matter experts.

The six weeks end with a final celebration and Safe Space Shark Tank® soft pitch contest attended by the trainers, coaches, staff, judges, special invitees, and peers. Together they celebrate the entrepreneurs’ growth and cheer them on as the new entrepreneurs present their business ideas to the world for the first time, soft pitch style.

After the completion of the six-week immersion training, participants are matched with an expert entrepreneurship business coach who helps them take the next steps in refining and launching their businesses during weekly meetings over the next two months.

Zoom meeting of participants.

Participants celebrate their growth and accomplishments at the final celebration and Safe Spark Shark Tank Pitching Contest, virtually from Gaza to the U.S., September 2021, Virtual Entrepreneurship Immersion Program

Virtual Global Ambassadors Programs

Over three weeks, students from Gaza and the West Bank develop their global leadership skills and create innovative solutions to community challenges focused on global topics of particular importance to the region. They meet virtually with other motivated peers and American experts, university students, and young professionals to learn about a specific topic of global and local importance, while they build leadership skills, become more competitive in the global economy, and prepare to make a difference in their communities and the world.

The participants become part of building a network of young community leaders creating solutions to community challenges. They build skills and community as a cohort, explore skills and traits required of a global ambassador, focus on the intercepts of entrepreneurship, technology, and globalization, interact with diverse experts and peers, and develop a community innovation to implement online or in their communities. 

Program topics have included: 

  • Women’s Empowerment 
  • Environmental Action 
  • Media Literacy 
Zoom meeting of participants

Newly graduated Global Ambassadors of Women’s Empowerment, February 2022, Virtual Global Ambassador Program on Women’s Empowerment

Learn more…

Skills for Success

Amideast

Amideast | West Bank and Gaza

America House – Jerusalem and Ramallah, A division of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, Palestinian Affairs Unit

 

For more information, contact: 

Katie Curiel, Director – kcuriel@legacyintl.orgcreate new email 

 

 

 

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