VE provides a solution for schools to offer all students meaningful skills-based career experiences. Through our hands-on, task-based curricula, students test drive potential careers and develop in-demand skills and competencies that post-secondary institutions and employers are seeking. By managing the day-to-day operations of a company, students not only develop business skills and an entrepreneurial mindset, they also identify career pathways that align with their interests, talents, and aspirations.
Empowering Young People to Own Their Futures
Our Guiding Principles
All young people must have the opportunity to learn and succeed regardless of zip code
What young people learn today contributes to creating the world we live in tomorrow. Our programs guide youth to be adaptable, collaborative and self-directed, so that they can apply their technical skills and knowledge purposefully in postsecondary education and careers.
A thriving global economy requires a skilled workforce
Guided by an industry-driven, educational framework, students launch and manage the growth of a company in a digital, international economy of 7,000+ student-run businesses in 40+ countries. Students learn how their skills, knowledge, and mindset as employees, workgroup members, and department teams contribute to the success and challenges in meeting company goals.
The nature of work and the workplace are changing
The gig economy, artificial intelligence, and global connectivity are among the forces influencing how we think about work, what constitutes work, and the skills we will need. Through our programs, students gain experience using technological tools and work processes that prepare them to navigate the ever-changing workplace skillfully.
Why VE Matters
Our students tell you why in their own words
served since 1996
87% of VE students
identify a career pathway of interest because of VE
Serving 15,000 students
from 430 schools per year
90% of students
interact with business professionals on a regular basis
50% of schools
served are identified as high need
95% of schools
participate in VE events & activities
A global network of more than
7,000 practice enterprises in more than 40 countries
Through our membership in EUROPEN-PEN International, VE is connected with a global network of over 7,000 Practice Enterprises (PEs) and 200,000 trainees in schools, universities, vocational training institutions, companies, and training centers in more than 40 countries around the world.
Learn more at penworldwide.org.