The European Commission (EC) announced 2023 as the European Year of Skills to focus on establishing and investing in mechanisms intended to meet the rapidly changing job market and professional education needs required for upskilling of the European workforce.
In reality, besides the long ongoing integration of automatisation and artificial intelligence in predominantly production industries, more recently the pandemic driven necessity for rapid digitalisation significantly altered the global approach to learning and doing business. These changes combined and additionally exacerbated by climate crisis response and global political turmoil had an irreversible effect on the job market needs. In response to this new reality the European Union focused on empowering people and businesses to adapt to this human-centered digital future.
In the Digital Decade Strategy the EU aims that by 2030 a minimum of 80% of Europeans achieve basic digital skills while over 20 million Europeans will be certified Information and Communications Technology (ICT) specialists. The new call under the DIGITAL Europe Programme, which will fund new Bachelor's and Master's degrees in key technology areas, addresses precisely this need.
Adaptation to this new, rapidly developing reality has to be swift and requires agility from both the educators and the learners. On one hand traditional, static and predominantly specific, theoretical education will have to, due to the fast evolving environment, be transformed into a lifelong and life-wide learning that aims to holistically develop learners. This foresees supporting learners in identifying and utlising their talents, focusing on developing relevant professional skills through vocational training and supporting them to reach self-fulfillment both in work environment and as active participants in society.
We, therefore, want to encourage young people to think about their own talents as well as their future profession, where that talent, transformed into professional skills through education, would be best used in a work environment.
Talking points for discussion with students to foster creativity
Do you have a special talent, any specific interest in subjects and topics regardless of whether they are taught in school or outside it? What and where would you like to study if you could go to any school in the world and study any subject? What is your future profession, why and how does it fit into the new, digitalized reality? What innovations will you introduce into your profession one day, what will you do differently from previous generations of professionals in that sector? How could your work in that profession positively affect your life, your community and contribute to a better Serbia in Europe? If you were the best in your future profession, what award would you win and for what? What skills do you need to make it happen? Where can these skills be acquired?