Design of a mutually beneficial scheme for cooperation
Each vocational college has established a vocational education and training (VET) cooperation network with water sector enterprises. The project is developing a mutually beneficial scheme for cooperation between vocational colleges and water management bodies, sites and companies. This scheme is based on contractual arrangements between colleges and water management enterprises for the practical training of students, the further training of teachers, the cooperation at regional competence centres and in the development of joint standards, curricula and study materials.
Improvement of standards and curricula
Four occupational standards have been developed that respond to the requirements for current and future water-management professions. The curricula were modernized and oriented towards labour market education and training needs with the goal of increasing practical training by up to 50%. The following trades will benefit from the new standards and curricula:
- Master for water/gas supply and sewerage systems
- Master for irrigation technology operations and maintenance
- Master for reclamation of irrigated land
- Master for installation, repair and maintenance of automated water management facilities
The pilot colleges’ principals, their deputies, teachers of specialised subjects and industrial training masters also benefitted from various training courses: on water-facilities management, methodical practice, improvement of language skills, curriculum and standards development and general management skills. Leading specialists of the water enterprises and facilities were trained to organise and accompany in-company training to qualify them for their new roles in modern VET for the water sector.
Establishing regional competence centres
Almost all pilot colleges of the project have begun establishing regional competence centres. These centres will offer training courses for staff of water-management enterprises, water-users associations and private companies involved in operation, maintenance and repair. Unemployed people who want to work in the water sector will also benefit from training offered at the centres. The courses are designed by national and international experts and approved by the Ministry of Labour. In the future they could be offered countrywide. Currently, the training takes place at pilot colleges and at work places in companies and water-management enterprises.