Studying to become experts

Two research and development centres to appear in Belarus next academic year
By Vladimir Mokhov

During a visit to the Belarusian State Technological University, Belarus’ Prime Minister, Mikhail Myasnikovich, noted that higher educational establishments, alongside secondary special institutions, are training the highly-qualified industrial personnel of tomorrow.

He regrets that the prestige of such jobs has diminished, despite engineers and technologists being skilled workers. He believes that more could be done to promote vocational training, and that this would improve the nation’s sci-tech progress and innovative development.

“Fulfilling the President’s instruction, the Government has decided to set up complete educational systems at the Belarusian State Agricultural Academy and at the Belarusian State Technological University, with young people being taught vocational skills through their secondary years and on to university,” he added. He hopes to see students receive hands-on practical training, with internships in industry, so that theoretical knowledge can be reinforced by true experience. He believes that this will considerably reduce time needed to adapt to the workplace.

“It will be a serious leap for our sci-tech sphere and will undoubtedly raise the competitiveness of our economy,” Mr. Myasnikovich is convinced. The new R&D centres may also house career centres offering training. This will allow workers to keep up to date with the latest developments in their field.

He notes that the timber and woodworking industries are developing rapidly in Belarus yet lack specialists. “At today’s meeting, we agreed that relevant departments will be created to oversee accelerated training of secondary school graduates and various profile specialists. Within three years, we should have a clutch of specialists with contemporary university degrees, who possess the necessary knowledge and skills,” he explained, emphasising that the pulp and paper industry is a priority.

According to Mr. Myasnikovich, contract-based education is a focus. “If an enterprise sends a young person for training, they need such learning to be tailored to their specific enterprise, in order for it to be effective,” he underlined.
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