Junior Achievement Albania, on January 23th, 2020, organized the virtual conference on “Financial and Entrepreneurial Education”. This conference was held in the framework of the project “Linking education, regional skills and potentials with regional youth employment practices” – BY LEAP, funded by the Civil Society and Media Program – 2019 by the European Union. The conference was held with the presence more than 150 participants including international and national actors, institutional partners of Junior Achievement Albania, representatives of the business community, civil society and media and beneficiaries of Junior Achievement programs in Albania. The participants discussed the importance of entrepreneurial and financial education, its impact on the development of the country and the development of effective strategies and action plans to provide inclusive entrepreneurial education.

The Chairman of the Board of JA in Albania and Co-Chair of AADF, Z.Maartin Mata, marked the conference and highlighted that financial and entrepreneurial education is necessary and assurance for success in the future. The event was marked by representatives of the ‘’Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports’’, Ms. Zamira Gjini who stated that projects with an entrepreneurial focus should be supported because they encourage competency-based learning. Also, she stressed the importance of teacher training as an important element in student development. The conference had different panels of discussions.

The first panel discussed the importance of financial education and entrepreneurship in pre-university education in the country. The panelists were:

  • Dr. Ermira Qosja – Doctor of Science, Expert in Financial Education and Entrepreneurship
  • Erjeta Alhysa – Director of the Local Education Office Tirana
  • Nazif Kotorri – Teacher at the high school “Shefqet Guzi”, Gramsh

Mrs. Qosja highlighted the importance of teacher training and the impact that it has on the quality of teaching and student formation. Also, Mrs. Erjeta stressed the need for activities for students as a very good opportunity to engage them in concrete projects. Mr. Kotorri during his speech underlined that the programs implemented by JA in Albania have a direct impact on the mentality of students and shape their development.

In the second panel, the participants discussed the importance of the entrepreneurial and financial education programs that the Junior Achievement office in Albania implements, which have as a basic element learning from practice. They also discussed the importance of examples and success models from the business community as mentors for the young people aspiring to build entrepreneurship and start-ups in the country.

The panelists were:

  • Blodin Çuçi – President of the Securities Trading Association in Albania
  • Anja Deinzer – Director for Albania of the Sparkassenstiftung für internationale Kooperation
  • Dritan Mezini – Executive Director of DM Consulting / Co-founder of duapune.com

The three panelists highlighted the importance of financial education and the role of business in it. Mr. Mezini stressed that we need to strengthen the basic concepts in students and lead them through the idea’s generation phase. Mr. Cuci also said that the transmission of ideas affects long-term economic growth. He stressed that teacher training is an important element in the personal formation of students.

Mrs. Deinzer pointed out that Albania is a market that needs a lot of financial education because it has low financial knowledge.

During the conference there was a broad discussion about the role of civil society as a promoter of financial education and the informative and educational role of the media in this regard. The panelists and the guest discussed about the daily challenges they face in promoting financial education and shared their perspective on good practices established.

Enio Civici – from SCAN TV, shared more about the role of the media in the transmission of financial knowledge. He addressed that more cooperation is needed between media channels to promote entrepreneurial education. Mr. Malaj also said that it is important to emphasize the benefits of individuals from entrepreneurial education and not only society. He stressed that it is our mission to lead young people on this journey.