Pilot training of building specialists and electrical engineers in Sofia
In January 2020, the Bulgarian partners under the Project “GSS – VET – Geothermal & Solar Skills – Vocational Education & Training”: Technical University – Sofia; the Chamber of Installation Specialists in Bulgaria /CISB/, the European Labor Institute /ELI/, and Sofia Energy Centre /SEC/, organized the pilot training of building specialists and electrical engineers from all over the country /over 60 trainees/ – mainly members of CISB. The training in Photovoltaic systems was conducted in Sofia, in TU – Sofia, by trainers from ELI and SEC – Associate Professor Marin Marinov, eng. Dimitar Ivanov, architect Evelina Stoykova. The training in Solar-thermal systems was conducted in Plovdiv, at the University of Food Technologies by trainers from the VTC at CISB – Professor Mincho Minchev, eng. Adelina Stanimirova, eng. Dariya Poppalova. The trainers referred to above had previously attended a course for trainers under the Project.
The Project is financed by the EU Programme ERASMUS + . The partners under the Project are from 4 countries; they are universities, vocational training centres, branch organizations, and chambers of commerce from Greece, Germany, Spain and Bulgaria – 12 participants in all.
The curriculum was developed on the bases of surveys and mapping of the existing vocational training syllabuses, and discussions with representatives of companies working in the field of RES on the needed skills and competences of the specialists referred to above. The newly developed syllabuses have been uploaded on the platform of the VTC at CISB in the National Agency for Vocational Education and Training /NAVET/, which enables VTC at CISB to award legitimate certificates for part of the profession “Technician of energy facilities and installations”, specialized in Renewable Energy Sources.
Innovative training methods of ubiquitous learning were used – 3 different forms of teaching and learning, namely:
-Self-training using the specially developed Platform of the Project, with personalized access to training content, quizzes, tests and games;
-Practical training in a real-life working environment.
The training ended with a self-assessment test and final tests, in accordance with the certification requirements. The trainees who have passed the tests successfully will be awarded ‘Certificate of Vocational Training & Qualification’ for part of the profession, which will be valid and recognized not only in the country but also in the EU.
The trainees showed a keen interest in the subject of the training, and its innovative teaching methodology, as well as a responsible attitude to the self-training part.
The next step under the Project will be to diversify the final results and disseminate them / the training content on the Platform is also available in English/ in 8 other EU countries.
During the training, the so called ‘green skills’ were emphasized in view of the growing need for “green jobs”. It was pointed out that ‘the green economy’ is vital for conserving the existing natural resources, protecting the environment and the well-being of humanity.
After evaluating the results from the training and the respective tests, we are planning to organize meetings with companies, mostly members of CISB, in order to involve them in the practical training of future trainees. In addition, the VTC at CISB will offer online courses in “Renewable Energy Sources” in the future, using the platform developed under the Project.