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European Year of Skills

Kaspars’ story: Digital upskilling opens new prospects

The project "Training for Adults” improves the professional skills of workers, addresses skills mismatches, promotes the competitiveness of employees and increases labour productivity. 


Kaspars is a trained electrician who previously worked as an engineer. His everyday tasks included dealing with large amounts of data that needed to be examined and processed. Kaspars quickly realised that he needed to learn to work with programmes that could handle this volume of data and information, so he began looking for courses in the subject of data analytics. That is when he saw an open call for "Training for Adults" and decided to enrol in a data analysis course. Soon after completing his training, Kaspars began to apply what he had learned in his current job and was able to advance in his career. "Since my studies, I have held several job positions, each with more complicated tasks than previous one and with a higher salary” Kaspars says. 

Acquiring new certified skills provided Kaspars with new educational opportunities. "Thanks to the obtained certificates that included ECTS points, I was able to enrol in Riga Technical University’s Master's study programme in Business Informatics” - Kaspars adds 

Great interest to upskill in Latvia  

The last round of the project focused on digital skills training. Any working or self-employed Latvian resident over the age of 25 including young parents on parental leave, could apply. Over 11000 workers applied for digital upskilling programmes, 75% of which were women. The European Union and state funding covered 90% of the training costs, with the worker contributing 10%. Working people from low-income families received free training. 

"The high number of applications received is a sign of the professional development ambitions of the population. This confirms a change of mindset that by investing in their own development and the development of their skills, everyone will benefit both in their personal well-being and in the labour market," emphasises Dita Traidās, Director of VIAA and Latvian National Coordinator for the European Year of Skills. 

Employees could select an educational programme that covered a total of five digital skills:  

  1. Information processing and data literacy 
  2. Communication and cooperation 
  3. Digital content creation 
  4. Cybersecurity 
  5. Problem solving 


"Training for Adults" is co-funded by the European Social Fund and the Latvian State with a total budget of more than 45 million euros. The project is implemented by the Latvian State Education Development Agency in collaboration with local governments, educational institutions, and the Latvian State Employment Agency from 2017 to the end of 2023.