THE HUNGARIAN-AUSTRIAN CROSS-BORDER COOPERATION PROGRAMME "EDUWOOD" STARTED
The "EDUWOOD" Hungarian-Austrian cross-border cooperation programme was launched in May 2021. The main task of the project, which is being implemented within the framework of the Interreg V-A Austria-Hungary programme with the support of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), is the practice-oriented, project-based development of woodworking and furniture education on both sides of the border.
The idea behind the project was motivated by the need to better connect between education and the labour market. In both countries, the lack of motivation of students in the field of woodwork and furniture education, drop-outs or delays in completing (graduate) training can be observed. In the experience of professionals, education is not sufficiently practice-oriented and project-based, and the number of practitioners involved is still low. On both sides of the border, the challenge for educational institutions is to nurture talent and develop competences in line with industry needs. Practice-oriented, long-term, educational cooperation between enterprises and educational institutions works well within the two countries (dual training), but there is no established system for cross-border cooperation, so concrete, long-term cooperation agreements are needed in the field of wood architecture and furniture between enterprises and schools, linking the two sides of the border.
The overall coordination of the project will be carried out by the Sopron Wood Science Foundation (FATA) in partnership with the Institut für Innovations- und Trendforschung (IITF) in Graz and the secondary and higher education institutions, but the project objectives can only be achieved if as many students, teachers and enterprises as possible are involved.
"In addition to the implementation of MOOC courses, we plan to create a common online learning platform for skill sharing, building community and increasing student motivation by making learning an experience for them," said Dr. Pakainé Pakainé, adding that online education is now in the spotlight due to the epidemic situation, but there is still a growing demand for the use of online tools in the education of the younger generation.
The online platform will be used to build a cross-border community of students, teachers and related industry players who will impart some knowledge to their peers, mainly through video sharing, but it will also be possible to share educational material in other formats on different topics, in specific categories of woodworking and furniture industry. For primary school pupils, career guidance will be provided through workshops, job fairs and summer camps.
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