In the next academic year, the UT Narva College together with the Estonian IT College, the UT Institute of Computer Science and the local enterprises will open IT curriculum: Information Technology Systems Development. The new curriculum has been designed considering the needs of eastern Estonia to meet the expectations of the labour market.
The primary target group of the IT education of the UT Narva College are the young people of Ida-Virumaa.
"Many Russian-speaking young people are very good at science subjects, but their knowledge of Estonian might not be sufficient to start studies in Estonian only. The planned curriculum allows starting studies close to home and connects the students to the local labour market," the Director of the UT Narva College Katri Raik said, adding that people who are already working, are also welcome to join the programme, especially if they need to raise their IT qualification to enhance their competitive advantage in the labour market.
"There is no doubt that the opening of this curriculum supports the development of Narva and Ida-Virumaa and is likely to keep more young people with higher education in the region," Raik said.
She finds that the opening and development of the curriculum in Narva increases the presence of the state in Ida-Virumaa. "That is a way the state can take an interest in the future of Russian-speaking young people and offer them an opportunity to acquire a specialisation in which they can earn a salary above the Estonian average, be taken into account and be necessary and thus be integrated in the society."
The new curriculum meets the ever-increasing need of the society for qualified IT specialists. Studies that take place in three languages, give the best preparation for entry into the labour market of the region as well as of Estonia as a whole. The students will also be encouraged to cooperate with international enterprises.
"It has the potential of bringing new well-paid jobs to the region and inviting IT companies to open offices in Ida-Virumaa. IT specialists who graduate from the programme can find jobs at existing companies or establish new enterprises in the region," Raik said.
The creation of the new curriculum has been also introduced to and discussed with enterprises of the region, including Eesti Energia AS and Viru Keemia Grupp. The employers agreed that the new curriculum gives added value if it trains people who could build and maintain systems on one hand and specialists who have good programming skills on the other. The entrepreneurs found that this would create opportunities for a new type of entrepreneurship that is currently missing from the region. Today the region also lacks programming competence, which makes the solving of several problems very expensive for the employers. The IT education of the college would offer a solution to that.
The development of the curriculum is based on the professional higher education curriculum of the Estonian IT College. The graduates will receive a professional higher education diploma.
Editor: S. Tambur