ORGANIZATION NAME: Southern New Hampshire University
LOCATION: New Hampshire, USA
SUMMARY: The ongoing refugee crisis with 65.3 million displaced worldwide leaves entire generations without higher education or employment opportunities. SNHU World University is a proven, comprehensive, context-sensitive, and scalable solution to bring high-quality, low-cost tertiary education to refugees worldwide. Our program offers refugees a US-accredited BA degrees through SNHU's groundbreaking online competency-based program.
PROBLEM SPACE: "The world's refugee crisis is a dramatic acceleration of a decades-long trend. The average duration for protracted displacement is now 26 years, leaving entire generations without higher education or employment opportunities. 6.7 million refugees remain confined to camps and informal settlements; others try to survive under the radar in cities, and an increasing proportion are risking their lives on dangerous migration routes, pursuing safety and jobs in high-income countries.
Millions of children face uncertain futures and the risk of becoming a "lost" generation. Without education and credentials for skilled employment, disenfranchised youth are vulnerable to radicalization and recruitment, and also remain ill-prepared for leadership roles which could transform their communities' futures."
SOLUTION: "The fundamental technology underlying our refugee education model is SNHUäó»s College for America (CfA) platform, a low-cost online education program that awards US-accredited degrees based on competencies students acquire rather than by counting hours that committed to studies. The SNHU team oversees program implementation at a global and regional level through our Refugee Learning Department at SNHU and provides capacity-building resources and support to on-the-ground implementing partners.
We currently work in one refugee camp in Rwanda, but aspire to expand to18 sites across 9 countries to develop new and upgrade existing learning centers that deliver a variety of connected learning courses, certificates, and diplomas, as part of a learning pathway that leads to enrollment in SNHU's U.S.-accredited degree program. To ensure access, overcome educational gaps, and reduce attrition, we have pioneered a unique learning delivery model that offers on-the-ground instruction. We keep costs low by training national staff to serve as on-site academic facilitators, who adapt our curriculum to local contexts while providing language and learning support. Our site-specific implementing partners provide additional academic and psychosocial services, operational services, and access to existing infrastructure, and also work with local NGOs and employer networks to facilitate employment opportunities for graduates."