A new academic year has begun, so our educational projects have started to operate full power. The list of our projects includes IT Expert and 17 bachelor’s programs at universities, Lviv IT Cluster Academy, which initiated the reformation of vocational-technical education but we do not slow down and start one more project within IT Future – the IT Future Mentors.
“IT Future project is one of the first Lviv IT Cluster initiatives concerning education. This year we scale it and create one more direction – IT Future Mentors. Sharing experience and direct communication with IT specialists will help students to learn more about all the opportunities of the industry from the practicing experts,” – says Khrystyna Horbas, Education Director at Lviv IT Cluster.
The main goal of the project is to interest and acquaint students with the world of IT, the professions, and industry opportunities.
The IT Future Mentors project was initiated by the Lviv City Council in 2020, but due to Covid-19, it was not possible to fully launch the project. At that time, cooperation with the only “Nadiya” secondary school was established. They were mentored by “Eleks” IT company, namely by Taras Datsyuk, Middle Software Developer. From April to May he conducted practical Python lessons for 8th graders.
The goals of the project also include:
- Popularization of IT sphere among Lviv students
- Career guidance
- Development of hard and soft skills of students
- Practical use of students knowledge
- Assistance in implementation of first practical projects.
“The requirements for the schoolchildren’s educational level change every year, but the academic programs at educational institutions do not always meet these requirements. Now the field of information technology is one of the most attractive among the entrants.
Today, it is highly important to provide young people with appropriate opportunities for development in IT. This can only be achieved through the joint efforts of all interested parties: teachers, students, parents, and representatives of IT companies. For its part, the educational institution should motivate students to learn and develop independently. Therefore, children need to have IT mentors who will boost and help them find themselves. This will help students see what results can be achieved. It is important for us that mentors cooperate with all schools. In this way, Lviv will become the city showing the most productive joint work of schoolchildren and IT companies in Ukraine,”- comments Zoryana Dovhanyk, Head of City of Lviv Department of Education.
Lviv IT Cluster has already involved five IT companies in the IT Future Mentors project – Inoxoft, Avenga, Perfectial, Epam, DataArt. They will work with different schools in Lviv. The format of cooperation is very flexible and adapts to the facilities and needs of each company and school. For example, in one school, the project can be implemented as part of a computer science lesson, and in another as an elective. In general, the project has already attracted the interest of the company’s employees, representing various industries: QA engineers, HR specialists, developers, business analysts, designers.
“The decision to support such an initiative has been made immediately. We are very pleased that IT Cluster, together with the city officials, is initiating various programs, and thanks to this Lviv holds the leadership among all Ukrainian cities. On our part, we wanted to join the project to tell more about our industry, the nowadays specifics of the labor market operation and help young people consciously choose their future profession. This is also a good opportunity to say that IT is not just about programming. We will also not hide that such experience is very interesting for our colleagues as well, so we are counting on win-win cooperation, ” comments Iryna Pakosh, Learning and Development Coordinator at Inoxoft.
“IT Cluster’s interest in the project will be a great motivating experience for students because experts will help them immerse themselves into the basics of the profession, which is now one of the most popular in the labor market. The stories of their formation and success in IT will be a good guide for young people facing challenges in choosing their future profession. And, of course, we expect that with such cooperation, students will gain new practical knowledge and skills, ” said Olesya Mandziuk, head of the №93 lyceum.
Our pilot project IT Future Mentors will last one semester at the end of which we will assess how effective such cooperation will be and what will need to be improved.
To achieve our educational goal, we plan to scale the project and are ready to involve as many specialists from the Cluster’s member companies as possible. If your company is interested in the project – write to the project manager Oksana Korin – email@example.com.