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Education in the Face of the New Challenges of Our Time

Education in the Face of the New Challenges of Our Time

STEM education and business contributing to professional training discussed at the women’s forum 

One of the women’s forum platforms in Novokuznetsk was dedicated to the problems of education and career guidance in the face of the new challenges of our time. Experts discussed opportunities and prospects of STEM education in industrial regions, creating conditions for the development of project activities, modern practices of involving children and youth in scientific activities, creative industries, and creative thinking. Elena Pakhomova, Deputy Governor of the Kemerovo Oblast for Education and Science, acted as a moderator of the session. 

Irina Efremova-Garth, Head of Corporate Citizenship for IBM Russia/CIS, shared about business’s contribution to changing traditional paradigm of career guidance and secondary education. 

She mentioned many companies have the opportunity to allocate funds for organising educational events, Olympiads, lectures, etc. Such a format was disseminated in large cities. However, modern technologies provide the opportunity of performing those educational programmes all around Russia. 

According to Ms. Efremova-Garth, schools cooperating with IT departments and large enterprises are crucial in digitalisation era. There is a certain progress in that direction, yet we should work further to prepare children to integrating in modern society. 

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A specific part of her speech was about involving youth and women in STEM spheres that will shape our life in the nearest future. 

The expert session featured educational and vocational projects addressing modern challenges and providing an opportunity to involve youth in studying exact sciences. 

Thus, Aliya Maulesheva, CEO of the UCMAS RUSSIA company, spoke on mental arithmetic. 

Ms. Maulesheva mentioned there are four main competences in the 21st century: cooperation/collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and creativity. UCMAS programme is designed to develop those aspects. 

Alyona Pfetzer, Head of the Regional Centre for Development of Non-Commercial Organisations and Project Technologies to the Kuzbass Regional Institute for Development of Professional Education and a career coach, shared about the experience of actualising vocational projects in the Kemerovo Oblast. She presented the programmes called ‘Ticket to the Future’ and ‘Hundred Ways - One Is Mine’ alongside vocational training within WorldSkills and Abilympics Russia. 

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Ms. Pfetzer spoke on the topic of mentorship. She mentioned that every person should find his or her mentor to form a professional trajectory. 

According to the international research, 74% of young entrepreneurs noted business growth thanks to mentors. 

Alyona Pfetzer also said that we should not be afraid of a kind of mentorship when children teach children, as it is an important sphere. 

During the expert session titled ‘Education and Career Guidance Problems in the Face of the New Challenges of Our Time’, the speakers also discussed the prospects of developing female education. 

Zamira Akbagysheva, President of the Congress of Women of Kyrgyzstan, Secretary General of the Union of Business Incubators and Innovation Centres of the Kyrgyz Republic, and coordinator of ‘Clobаl’ network of women’s business incubators, shared about the project called ‘Educated Woman – Educated Country’. 

The programme is actualised with the support of Chinese Embassy to Kyrgyzstan. It features women’s free courses in basic computer literacy, business planning, government regulations of business, and public speaking. Over a short term, the courses inspired a great interest among women and gained enormous popularity. Thus, it may be relevant to communicate Kyrgyzstan’s experience around the world. 

Vladimir Mashkov, artistic director of the Oleg Tabakov Theatre and People’s Artist of Russia, presented his speech during the second part of the session. 

He presides over the drama school with early professional acting education. The children graduating from the 9th form are admitted to the school. The teachers are scouting in different cities of Russia, as not all the parents can take their children to Moscow.


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The speaker mentioned that artistic character is essential for any person, as it develops emotional intelligence, which influences one’s advancement in life. 

Vladimir Mashkov also highlighted that in our digital era, every school should have a drama group. Children should have an opportunity to approach profound literature and talk to each other. 

In conclusion, the report on cadet education in Kuzbass was presented. Elena Kizyakova, TV presenter, reporter of the Rossiya-1 TV channel, author and host of the You Will Be a Parent rubric of the When Everyone Is at Home programme, CEO of the Videopassport Charity Fund for Promoting Family Foster of Children Left Without Custody, also spoke during the session. 

The speaker shared about Videopassport project. It specialises in making films about children, who speak about themselves, their life, and dreams. As of today, over 4500 passports were filmed and 3663 children found their new families. 

Further development vectors for modern education were revealed thanks to education and science representatives at the session. The platform also featured issues of teachers’ skills development. 

Kristina Danilina, news agency of the Eurasian Women’s Community

Translated by Nikolay Boykov


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