The Vocational Skills Development programme is one of the Directorate’s job creation programmes primarily concerned with bequeathing productive, functional and marketable skills to the unemployed. The skills acquisition intervention, introduced as a novel approach in combating mass unemployment, has remained a veritable tool since the inception of NDE in 1987.

The programme involves the use of NDE skills acquisition training centers across the country as well as workshops of master crafts-men and women operating in the informal sector as training outlets.  Where the informal sector operators are used, the trainees are attached as apprentices for periods long enough for them to acquire the necessary skills (i.e ranging from three (3) months to twenty (24) months depending on skill set). The Department also deploys well-equipped mobile workshops to train unemployed youths in rural areas where informal training outlets are non-existent to acquire functional and marketable skills.


The Vocational Skills Acquisition Training was designed to achieve the following objectives.

  1. To provide technical and Vocational training for holders of primary school certificate, secondary certificate, school dropouts and those with vertical literacy education.
  2. To equip the youths with such skills that will enable them to be self-employed or gain wage-employment.
  • To provide alternative employment opportunities for youths so that they can form co-operatives and start their own businesses.

The following schemes were adopted to achieve the above stated objectives:

  1. National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (NOAS)

The scheme is targeted at unskilled and unemployed youths both male and female (i.e illiterates and semi-literate, School leavers and school dropouts, Persons with special needs and Fresh Graduates from the tertiary institutions etc) to equip and up-skill them with relevant demand-driven skills. On graduation, some of them are provided with starter-packs consisting of necessary working tools /equipment or cash to set up their own workshops. This scheme is regarded as the pearl of the pack. It is implemented at 2 levels namely:

  1. Basic – National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (B-NOAS)
  2. Advanced- National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (A-NOAS)

 Basic National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (B-NOAS)

B-NOAS is a scheme through which unemployed school leavers are recruited and attached to Master Craftsmen/women in the informal sector or to NDE Skills Acquisition Centers to acquire marketable vocational skills for decent job opportunities. The trainers impart skills to the trainees using training facilities in their workshops or the NDE Skills Centers.

  1. Advanced National Open Apprenticeship Scheme (A-NOAS)

A-NOAS is designed for artisans who graduated from B-NOAS. It is aimed at upgrading their skills to higher levels of competence.

Skills Acquisition Training Centers

The skills training centres are expected to handle all matters relating to skills acquisition training in the states where they have been established.

The NDE has a total of 76 skills centers in 26 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

  1. School-On-Wheels

The School-On-Wheels scheme is designed to extend skills acquisition training activities to the unemployed in the rural areas. The scheme deploys well equipped Mobile Training Workshops with vocational skills training facilities to rural areas where training outlets are deficient or non-existent. Skills are acquired per training cycle which lasts for a minimum of three months. It is aimed at creating a pool of artisans that will readily address the needs of the rural environment, promote economic activities therein and also stem rural-urban drift.

  1. Community Based Skills Acquisition Training:

The community based training scheme is aimed at training some youths and women in high income generating activities within their various localities. This is with a view to engaging them in productive ventures thereby enabling them to contribute to the economic well-being of the nation. Participants are trained in such skills peculiar to their localities.

  1. Partnership in Skills Training

This is a window for collaborative skills acquisition training between the VSD department and relevant agencies, NGOs, CBOs, Religious organisations, Private organizations, individuals etc. It targets the empowerment of youths with relevant vocational skills, aligned with the request of the collaborating partner, for decent job opportunities, wealth creation and poverty reduction.

  1. Skills Acquisition Training for People With Special Needs:

This is a specialized skills acquisition training for Persons with Special Needs (i.e. vulnerable, physically challenged, widows, commercial sex workers, internally displaced persons, orphans etc). It is aimed at empowering them with functional skills that will enable them to become self employed and self-reliant. Other specific objectives of this training programme include:

  • To reduce unemployment, open street begging, veiled begging, armed robbery and other social vices.
  • To remove disillusionment among vulnerable and disabled persons (physically challenged) and imbue them with a sense of self- worth and self- confidence through the provision of marketable skills.
  • To reduce their dependency on other people thereby reducing poverty.
  1. Resettlement Loan Scheme

The Resettlement Loan Scheme (RLS) is designed to assist graduates of all vocational skills acquisition training scheme with tools / equipment and working capital to enable them establish and run successful businesses. This is to prevent them from relapsing into unemployment market.

Below are the lists of some trendy skill-sets peculiar across the thirty six states and the FCT.


A Hospitality/ Tourism (Domestic) Skills
1 Bead Stringing / Wire works 3 months
2 Beauty Therapy /Hair Gear Tying (Gele) 3 months
3 Barbing 3 months
4 Cosmetology / Soap making 3 months
5 Mat/ Basket Weaving 3 months
6 Hat / Cap Making 3 months
7 Photography / Video Coverage 6 months
8 Hair Dressing 6 months
9 Interior Decoration / Soft Finishing 6 months
10 Tie/Dye / Batick 6 months
11 Knitting 6 months
12 Event Planning /Management 6 months
13 Pottery 6 months
14 Fashion design 12 months
15 Catering / Confectionery  (Small chops) 12 months
B Technical (Mechanical / Electrical) Skills
1 Satellite Dish Installation 3 months
2 GSM Repairs 6 months
3 Vulcanizing 6 months
4 Computer Appreciation 6 months
5 Watch repairs 6 months
6 Shoe/ Leather works 12 months
7 Generator Repairs 12 months
8 Radio /TV Repairs 12 months
9 Computer Repairs 12 months
10 Panel beating /Auto spray 12 months
11 Air Conditioning/ Refrigeration 12 months
12 Lithography 18 months
13 Auto-Mechanic / Autotronics 18 months
14 Welding/ Metal Fabrication 12 months
15 Auto Electrical (Battery Charging) 12 months
C Building /Construction Skills
1 Painting 6 months
2 Production and Laying of Interlocking Blocks 6 months
3 Plumbing and Pipe fittings 12 months
4 Plasters of Paris (Pop) 12 months
5 Masonry / Block Making 12 months
6 Aluminum / Fabrication 12 months
7 Tilling 6 months
8 Electrical Installation 18 months
9 Carpentry/Wood Works 18 months
10 Furniture 18 months
11 Upholstery etc 12 months