Important Update: Date Change for WUSC’s Second Annual Roundtable

Dear colleagues,

Please note that this event’s date has changed to Monday, November 6.  This change was made to coincide with the visit of UNHCR High Commissioner, Filippo Grandi, to Ottawa. Roundtable participants will have an opportunity to attend a reception with the High Commissioner where a summary of the findings of the roundtable will be shared. We hope you can join us.

Please click here to register

This is a free event, but space is limited. We strongly encourage you to register early to avoid disappointment.

Increasing access to quality higher education for refugee and displaced youthWUSC’s Second Annual Roundtable Discussion

Date:           Monday, November 6, 2017

Time:           9:00am - 4:30pm

Location:    Carleton University

                   Room CO270/272

                   Residence Commons

                   1129 Colonel By Drive

                   Ottawa, Ontario

Please join us for a special reception following the event with UNHCR High Commissioner, Filippo Grandi. More details about the reception to follow.

WUSC (World University Service of Canada), in collaboration with Carleton University and York University's Centre for Refugee Studies, will convene representatives from Canadian post-secondary institutions and other stakeholders to explore how to increase access to higher education and employment for refugee and displaced youth, using technology and innovative blended methodologies.

With only 1% of refugee and displaced youth having access to tertiary education (UNHCR), there is a critical need to increase access to quality education. In addition to providing hope for a better future for refugee youth, tertiary education greatly enhances opportunities for a higher quality of life, successful integration and meaningful employment for refugee and displaced youth. These skills and capacities are relevant whether they are repatriated back home, integrate into their host communities or resettle into third countries.

Digital and blended education methodologies and technologies show great promise to reach large numbers of youth, potentially at low cost. As these offerings become more available, a growing body of enquiry and evidence on the uptake and effectiveness of different aspects of such initiatives is emerging. With this, there is a growing understanding of gaps and challenges that must be addressed for there to be an important scaling up and sustaining of such initiatives.

The full-day meeting will provide participants with the opportunity to exchange with peers, experts, implementers and other stakeholders with strong commitments to education and employment in refugee and under-resourced communities. Participants representing higher education institutions, government, foundations, civil society and the private sector will come together and determine how best to maximize Canada’s expertise and resources to address the critical challenge of significantly increasing access to quality higher education and employment for refugee and displaced youth.

Draft program

Roundtable on increasing access to quality higher education for refugee and displaced youth

Date: Monday, November 6, 2017

Location: Carleton University, Ottawa Ontario

  • Welcome and opening comments:

  • State of Play: Overview of current state of higher education in refugee and forced displacement contexts

  • Case studies:

    • Reflections from former student participant in blended learning in low-resource context

    • Essential learnings from implementing blended higher education initiatives

  • Small group discussions on:

    • Achieving scale in educational offerings

    • Sustainability and financial viability

    • Essential partnerships for effective blended program delivery

    • Transferability of credits/recognition

    • Access and implementation through a gendered lens

    • MOOCs, Information technology infrastructure and blended curriculum design

    • Role and capacity of research/building evidence around effective methodologies and approaches

    • Language(s) of instruction / language learning

  • Facilitated Discussion: The way forward - how to best mobilize Canadian PSE interest, resources and expertise in support of education and employment for refugee and displaced youth

Tom Tunney

Senior Advisor, University, College and CEGEP Partnerships

Conseiller principal, partenariats universitaires, collégiaux et cégeps

t: 1.613.761.3869 | e:


World University Service of Canada (WUSC)

Entraide universitaire mondiale du Canada (EUMC)

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