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14 July 2021

World Youth Skills Day United Nation's event — 15 July

Join Yousra Assali, WorldSkills Champion from Morocco, at the United Nation’s official recognition of World Youth Skills Day on 15 July.

This year’s World Youth Skills Day theme, Reimagining Youth Skills Post-Pandemic, aims to celebrate the resilience and creativity of youth throughout the crisis and focus attention on how technical and vocational education and training (TVET) systems have adapted to the pandemic, participate in the recovery, and imagine priorities they should adopt for the post-COVID-19 world.

Reimagining Youth Skills Post Pandemic - Yousra Assali Speech

Yousra joined the UN session to share her passion for education and technology to transform lives. She was drawn to electronics by the thought of having machines perform duties while humans sit in the comfort of their homes. Being able to invent or fix something that could make life easier for everyone was what motivated her to enter this field.

Yoursa Assali competing in electronics at WorldSkills Kazan 2019 in Russia.
A portrait photograph of Yoursa Assali, WorldSkills Champions Trust Representative for MENA.
Yoursa Assali holding a Moroccan flag as part of the country's team during the Opening Ceremony at WorldSkills Kazan 2019 in Russia.

Yousra joined the Specialized Institute of Applied Technology Ibn Marhal in Tanger, Morocco, and soon realized her talent for electronics.

“Electronics is the brain of every machine,” explains Yoursa. “I knew very well what every fiber was, what was it used for.”

Besides electronics, she finds the subject of embedded systems exciting. “I love the logics of creating your algorithm to solve a specific problem.”

While studying in Tanger she took part in Morocco’s national competition, which led her to the Belt And Road International Skills Competition in China, and finally to WorldSkills Kazan 2019 in Russia. Yoursa Assali is now the WorldSkills Champions Trust Representative for MENA.

Over the past year, she has started a two-year master’s degree program in Electronics and Electrical Engineering at Mohammed V University of Rabat, which she is pursuing online due to the pandemic.

“Everyone has had to face different challenges. For me it was definitely studying online,” explains Yousra. “It was hard enough to worry about health, it wasn’t pleasant having to also adopt a new form of studying.”

After a short while, Yoursa started looking at things from a different perspective and enjoying online learning.

“Everything is virtual but yet effective,” she says. “We have a laboratory at university with a camera which you can operate from your laptop and then see the results. And then I started having my own materials so I could even do it at home.”

Yousra credits WorldSkills for changing her personality and making her the patient and adaptable person she is today; qualities that have helped her deal with the challenges of the past year.

In the long term, Yousra would like to become an entrepreneur, although she has not yet found the perfect business niche.

The United Nation’s World Youth Skills Day event is co-organized by the Permanent Missions of Portugal and Sri Lanka to the United Nations, together with UNESCO, ILO and the Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth. The webinar will be recorded and live-streamed on UN web TV.

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