Exchange of apprentices

The exchange of apprentices contributes to a better understanding between young people from different regions of Switzerland. It also provides them with the possibility of discovering other cultures and other languages and boosts their interest in their occupation. Those who take part in exchanges can learn new working techniques in a new environment. The exchange of apprentices is based on reciprocity. The young people exchange their position for a fixed period of time and this action is supported by host companies and VET schools.

Several private and public bodies, both in Switzerland and abroad, are specialised in exchange programmes for learners and qualified young professionals. The Swiss Foundation for Confederal Collaboration – chapter Exchange of young people – and the local cantonal VET office can provide further information.

In addition to exchanges between linguistic regions, there are also possibilities of exchange beyond Swiss national borders. Examples: X-Change project, Euregio certificate and Leonardo internships.

Some vocational schools offer bilingual instruction for both vocational subjects and subjects falling into the category of language, communication and society (LCS). Bilingual instruction takes place both in the local and second language of instruction (English, French, German, etc.). The purpose of bilingual instruction is both to cover specific content and improve language skills, where the foreign language is approached as a working language rather than a language to be taught per se.

The Swiss Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (SFIVET) can provide further information. It serves as the federal competence centre for bilingual instruction in VET programmes in Switzerland.