In 2016, WES tackled a compounding issue: Syrian refugees were arriving in Canada by the thousands with high levels of education but struggling to return to work and school because they had little to no proof of their prior academic achievements.
To address this challenge, WES launched the refugee pilot project to test the value and utility of a credential evaluation report based on non-verified documents—whatever the individual had in hand; from a photocopy of a transcript to proof of membership in a professional association. The results of the pilot were published in February 2018. Early assessment of the project indicated that the reports had value: refugees were reporting acceptance and recognition from colleges, universities, professional licensing bodies, and employers.
That initial evaluation was still very early in the settlement journey of refugees: some were just beginning to get word on recognition. A year out, we conducted another assessment of the outcomes of refugees who participate in the pilot. The report, Accessing Education, Licensing, Employment: Addendum to A Way Forward for Refugees, is now live.
The results of this program evaluation provide us with a longer-term view into the outcomes of Syrian refugees.