Erasmus+, as Paweł Poszytek, Director General of the Foundation for the Development of the Education System pointed out at the beginning of the discussion, is not a programme exclusively for students, contrary to popular opinion. – It is addressed to all those who want to improve their skills, so that they fit in well with the needs of the labour market. We aren’t targeting specific age groups, social groups, or institutions, he explained. He also addressed the relatively new Erasmus+ InnHub project, which is intended to provide venues that are incubators for ideas and also designed to promote Erasmus good practice. The Foundation wants as many such centres as possible to be established in Poland.

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Nowe centra nie tylko dla studentów

Marzena Machałek, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Education and Science, addressed the idea from the government’s perspective. – Such places are intended to foster the exchange of ideas between communities, i.e. employers, universities, etc. But they will also disseminate new technological thoughts and anticipate the skills of the future needed in the labour market. The Ministry has set up a similar project and is working with the foundation to implement it, she said. She stressed the importance of cooperation between schools, teachers, employers, and universities in educating new generations in a dynamically changing economy.

Vice-Chancellor of the AGH University of Science and Technology, Professor Jerzy Lis, dr hab., eng., also commented on Erasmus+ InnHub. – This is a very important component of education in the broadest sense. Erasmus is the best tool for international cooperation imaginable. And this is a tool that others envy us. I’m glad that this idea is developing. We are implementing the “Hub” very quickly because it fits perfectly into the activities not only of AGH, but of all universities from Kraków, he added. He also noted that the collective power of education is evident in the new ideas.

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Marta Mikliszańska: Allegro liderem zmiany

Vice-Chancellor of Poznań University of Technology, Professor Teofil Jesionowski, dr hab., eng., spoke about the need for cooperation between universities and business. – Let me start with the most important element, which is strategic and long-term education. Our educational potential must be absorbed by the market. Graduates of doctoral schools are highly skilled professionals and find their way into the most advanced technology market. Education must, therefore, be complementary, he said. He stressed that, as a country, we should compete in the European and global market when it comes to highly qualified personnel.

Professor Marek Pawlawczyk, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Science and Development at the Silesian University of Technology, talked about how such projects affect economic development. – InnHub is an adequate tool for the mentioned tasks. We need information about our own needs and an informed workforce in order to grow. Education over the years is changing. Young people need to be given support and other – more attractive – methods of conveying information, commented Marek Pawlak. According to him, one way to reach young people is to show them what awaits them after college as the jobs evolve. When students see that there is a need for people with skills they are learning, the education will look much better. – “Hubs” of innovation will facilitate open discussion, so we will better understand the needs of young people. We should show that studying in our country does not close off opportunities in international markets. Stressing this as part of the new project will, in my opinion, be crucial, added Prof. Pawełczyk.

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Energia wiatrowa – to się opłaca

According to Paweł Poszytek, Eramus+ is firmly embedded in the Polish education system. – The number of institutions and people involved in it is truly impressive. All universities in Poland have an Erasmus card and enjoy various benefits. Erasmus is a permanent part of the education. “Hubs” are being born slowly; now we have three. But the next two are already in the finishing stages. The project is progressing quickly, and there is a lot of interest, the director recounted.

The challenge, he said, is structuring projects and introducing new tools that are rapidly gaining popularity. – We can already see how much interest there is in the new project. In March, we had a call for inter-institutional projects. This will be a good gauge of how many ideas we will get, P. Poszytek said. In his opinion, this will be a clear message that the previous year – during which the Erasmus+ InnHub concept was born – was not time wasted.

Partner: Fundacja Rozwoju Systemu Edukacji