In Jordan, A Recipe for Success

As the changing season welcomes students back to classrooms around the world, Jordan’s next generation of evaluation experts prep for their own graduation.

In 2016, the USAID-funded Jordan Monitoring Evaluation Support Project (MESP) launched a six-month practicum-based apprenticeship program. It is designed to give young professionals the tools and resources to effectively advance within the monitoring and evaluation (M&E) community.

Four weeks of intensive classroom courses were coupled with five months of on-the-job training with USAID’s implementing partners – a successful recipe that led to renewal of the program for an additional two years.

USAID Jordan Nancy Eslick with MESP apprentices.

USAID Jordan Mission Director Nancy Eslick meeting with MESP Apprentices on August 30.

The apprenticeship initiative, which is set to graduate a dozen new participants in October, impressed Acting USAID Mission Director, Nancy Eslick, enough to explore the program from the perspective of participants themselves.

Earlier this year, she met with a group of apprentices, host organizations and trainers. The group lauded the experience for being a great entry into the M&E field and providing effective hands-on experience.

“Monitoring and evaluation is a lifestyle, all of us are watching ourselves and learning from our mistakes when planning for our future,” said Emad Almajali.

Emad, now a Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Specialist, is one of 28 graduates who have completed the program to date and one of 25 who have secured full-time employment in the M&E field. Additionally, 22 organizations have been supported through the program’s job placements, including 17 USAID implementing partners, and 6 local development and humanitarian organizations.

Learn more about MESP’s commitment to accountability and aid effectiveness through data-driven best practices here:

”What we really care about….”

In addition to organizing another round in its successful apprentice program, Jordan MESP recently hosted the third annual MEL Conference on behalf of USAID.

Held in Amman, this year’s focus was “Self-reliance and Sustainability.” It was attended by over 250 people, representing 75 different government institutions, USAID activities, local and international organizations.

Attendees enjoyed a dynamic expo featuring 25 booths showcasing USAID activities, four panel discussions around self-reliance, and nine capacity-building sessions. These sessions covered themes including approaches to measuring sustainability, role of M&E in grant-making, community-based M&E, scaling up development interventions and introduction to self-reliance metrics.

Additionally, the event gave attendees a word from MSI President Emeritus and international scaling up expert Larry Cooley. Cooley highlighted the need for M&E professionals and projects to look beyond just their immediate work to the long-term effects on communities.

“We don’t want to sustain the project we want to sustain the flow of benefits to a group of people. We don’t want the project to continue, we want the benefits to the people to continue, and we want them to continue at the scale of the problem. What we really care about is the world before the project and the world after,” said Cooley.

For more from Larry Cooley and MSI’s scaling framework in action, click here.

  • USAID Jordan MEL Conference attendees.
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