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Why there are not enough specialists in the field of communication technologies in Moscow (October 28, 2022)

The sphere of communication technologies in Moscow needs competent specialists. Despite the fact that more than 60 universities train specialists in the field of telecommunications in the country, graduates are not always ready to immediately start working at the enterprise. The reason lies in the fact that the educational program of educational institutions and the professional standard at existing enterprises do not coincide, the participants of the conference “Development of Communication Technologies in Modern Realities. Challenges in Personnel Training”, which took place at the Moscow Technical School.

Education is not standard

At the moment, 66 universities are training specialists in the field of telecommunications, including the Moscow Technical University of Communications and Informatics (MTUCI). Also, partner schools and colleges in Moscow are responsible for education, of which there are a total of 255. Additional profiles are also being developed within the framework of telecommunications. For example, MTUCI plans to launch training in the areas of quantum communications soon. Photonics, sensors, 5G-6G networks will become promising areas. In addition, a robotics center has been opened at the university.

Nevertheless, there are several problems in the field of personnel training, said Andrey Mukhanov, Vice-Rector for Youth Policy and Educational Work of MTUCI. First of all, there is no effective mechanism for the interaction of the educational market, as a result of which the level of training of specialists is insufficient. Moreover, the field of telecommunications itself and the professions in this area are not very popular. As for Russian research in telecommunications, they are in short supply, which is facilitated, among other things, by historical background. According to Mukhanov, the possibilities of public-private partnerships for education and research are also poorly used.

The assessment of the qualifications of graduates and novice specialists at universities and enterprises does not always coincide, said Yury Ushanov, adviser to the ANO “Center for Digital Transformation”, a member of the working group on quantum communications of the Communications SEC. A single professional standard could become a unifying link. “Unfortunately, not all industries are building normal relations with the education sector. The requirement of a professional standard is a priority for many students, such a beacon of what the employer wants from him. Because the professional standard says that a student must have such and such knowledge and skills. The only thing is that there is no labor productivity, because this is a quantitative value,” he said.

The Agency for the Development of Skills and Professions is engaged in targeted training of specialists based on the technology of creating a corporate standard, Andrey Kryukov, deputy technical director of the agency, said. During the analysis, specialists find out what pains a particular enterprise has, what problems they face in this profession, conduct an audit of workplaces and production sites, and then, on the basis of this, collect a corporate standard for the profession. “The corporate standard is the skills and knowledge that a specialist should have specifically in this company and in this position. The list of equipment with which he works, what the finished product should be like, how to evaluate the result, what are the features of the production culture,” Kryukov added.

According to him, this approach helps to give a practical assessment of personnel, control the qualifications of employees at the stage of employment, adapt training programs, and diagnose processes right at the workplace.

Sources of help

The participation of future employers in the educational process of students is necessary, experts believe.

“Of the main solutions, we can single out: the introduction of practical cases of market players in the education system. It is very important that the representative of the employer participate in the educational process. Our university has extensive experience working with IT and telecommunications companies: when employer representatives participate in the assessment of graduation theses. Any forms for interaction are good: holding master classes, lectures, competitions, creating basic departments, laboratories, participating in the work of career centers,” Vice-Rector Andrey Mukhanov emphasized and said that these tools are already being implemented at the university.

According to Alexander Dobryakov, head of the Department of Vocational Education and Science of the Moscow Department of Education and Science, the help of employers is needed not only in assessing the knowledge of graduates, but also in updating work practice and the curriculum. “An important point is how the college should be equipped and what kind of laboratories and workshops should be. Let employers say what students need to learn, what software. It is important for us that the employer come and say what a person should have in order to work for him,” he added.

Updating knowledge and bringing competencies to the required standard is already being done at the Moscow Technical School, although graduates, not students, are still studying there.

“Personnel is the basis of everything. We pay great attention to the training of specialists, we hear requests from enterprises – what kind of personnel is needed, how to train, what is missing. We try to do everything so that employees do not have to be retrained and are as ready as possible for the projects in which they will go. The Moscow Technical School is an important project for us, which we will further develop,” explained Daria Stepanova, Deputy Head of the Moscow Investment and Industrial Policy Department. According to her, in order to achieve the goals, it is important to build a constructive dialogue between government officials, colleges and enterprises.

Additional opportunities to enhance competencies for both existing specialists and students will appear after the completion of the construction of the Shared Service Center, said Yury Astakhov, Deputy General Director for the Development of ITELMA Research and Production Enterprise. According to him, it is planned to build a single technological chain in which microelectronics products will be able to go from production to testing and at the final stage receive a quality certificate from the center. While studying at the Moscow Technical School, specialists, and in the future, students, will be able to receive additional practice in working on electronic products in the Service Center. The construction of the facility is scheduled to be completed in 2023, the project is being implemented as part of a large-scale investment project in Moscow with a volume of private investment of more than 2 billion rubles, Astakhov added.

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