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Australian Foreign Minister visits UNESCO – PepsiCo Centre of Excellence for Business Skills Development in Yangon Institute of Economics

A group photo with Centre of Excellence staff and students. (@UNESCO/Sriharsha Masabathula)

The Foreign Minister discusses the Centre’s programme with Australian Ambassador, Ms. Bronte Moules, UNESCO TVET Specialist, Ms. Robyn Jackson, and Head of DFAT Myanmar, Mr. Michael Hassett. (@UNESCO/Sriharsha Masabathula)

The Foreign Minister converses with a student from the Centre. (@UNESCO/Sriharsha Masabathula)

The Foreign Minister greets students and staff of the Centre. (@UNESCO/Sriharsha Masabathula)

08.07.2014

Yangon, 04 July 2014 – During her first official visit to Myanmar last week, the Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon. Julie Bishop, visited the UNESCO-PepsiCo Centre of Excellence for Business Skills Development, housed in the Yangon Institute of Economics (YIE), where she interacted with enthusiastic students and staff members.

The Centre of Excellence for Business Skills Development, which represents an innovative private-public partnership between PepsiCo, UNESCO, and the Ministry of Education’s Yangon Institute of Economics, opened its doors to the first cohort of students in June 2014 with the aim of strengthening the business and employment skills of Myanmar’s youth.

Twenty-five students are currently enrolled in the Centre’s first 10-week pilot course, which includes units on navigating the world of work, working with others, getting the work done, and introducing the world of business, as well as a series of guest lectures and individual career counseling.

At the Centre, the Foreign Minister was greeted by the Rector of YIE, Dr. Khin Naing Oo, and UNESCO TVET Specialist, Ms. Robyn Jackson, who, as a secondment from the Australian Aid programme, works with YIE staff to manage the Centre’s programs.  

During her visit, the Minister visited a class where a Myanmar businessman was delivering a guest lecture and conversed with students about their business goals and Myanmar’s economic future. The Minister highlighted Australia’s continued commitment to support education and private sector growth in Myanmar and noted the importance of the skills that students were developing through the Centre’s programmes.

The Centre of Excellence for Business Skills Development is expected to be launched on 12 September 2014 by high-level representatives from the Myanmar Government, UNESCO, and PepsiCo.

For more information on the UNESCO-PepsiCo Centre of Excellence for Business Skills Development, please contact Ms. Robyn Jackson, TVET Specialist, at r.jackson@unesco.org.