Viru College has played important role in integration over last 20 years ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Viru College's opening ceremony.
Viru College's opening ceremony. Source: Sergei Stepanov/ERR

Tallinn University of Technology's Viru College in Ida-Viru County celebrates its 20th anniversary this year and has taught over 1,000 students during this time. The college plays an important role in integrating young people from different nationalities.

In Estonian educational, the necessity of regional colleges has long been a topic of discussion. The director of the college Mare Roosileht said the coronavirus has helped to level the playing field for central and regional universities, ETV current news show "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported on Sunday.

"Maybe a year ago I would have said that what is missing is that the courses or knowledge are not so accessible here as they are in Tallinn and Tartu. Now, when we have learned to live with the pandemic, when we know what daily distance learning is like on Zoom, every course is accessible in Ida-Viru County, whether from the U.S. or Tallinn, we don't see this as a minus anymore," Roosileht said.

The college has been the flagship of Ida-Viru County's integration for a long time, because, among other things, it has had to deal with the shortcomings of Estonian language teaching in Russian-language schools in the region.

"In addition, Viru College really plays a very important role in the integration of Estonian and Russian youth. The college has been working for 20 years to bring Russian and Estonian youth together and teach Estonian to young Russians. It is important that multicultural young people get together. Now we are followed by the Kohtla-Järve State High School at the high school level. I very much hope that the basic schools will move in the same direction," Roosileht said.

Currently, more than 500 students study in four subjects at the Viru College, a third of whom are from outside Ida-Viru County. Many of them study by distance learning and work at the same time.

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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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