PEP Summer School Demonstrates the Hidden Potential
of Macedonia's Youth
PEP in partnership with the multinational IT company SEAVUS, organized a one week summer school for 21st Century employability skills. It was held from 21-27 August, in the Hotel Montana, Krusevo. The objective of the school was to introduce life and entrepreneurial skills to secondary education students from vocational schools and gymnasiums. All secondary schools were invited to send students. 187 students applied and participated in a test developed by SEAVUS containing two parts: a logic test and a written task. 50 applicants were successful and attended the school.
The participants were presented with topics related to leadership, negotiation skills, public speaking, career development, ideas for successful entrepreneurship, and skills necessary to succeed in the 21Century. There was no classical academic lecturing – it was an interactive program in which the participants/students took the main lead in the implementation of the program under the tutoring of their trainers.
Through various energizers, team building and social activities, the students tried to find answers on: What does it take to be a good leader? How can we identify a great communicator? How do we improve our public speaking? How do we prepare a good resume? What are the competences a real entrepreneur should posses? - These were just a few of the questions that the students were able to discuss during the sessions.
“My friend made me apply for this school although I wasn’t sure that it’s something I’ll enjoy. If someone would have told me that I would prefer to be a part of a school during my summer holiday rather then to be in front of my computer, I would have laughed. Now, I can only tell that I regret that this summer school doesn’t take longer. Every minute is interesting. We play computer games and we learn how to design them. We play mission impossible and we develop teams. We play treasure hunt and we solve logical tasks. It’s unbelievable! We learn and have fun at the same time!” said Ivica Filcevski, final year student from Ohrid.
The organizers and students gave statements for many electronic and printed media. The journalists learned from the students that the modern economy is increasingly in demand of people with sophisticated competencies and the ability to adapt to changing requirements. The most frequently asked questions by the students were related with their future success as individuals, as employees, as future leaders, but also, they were very interested to discuss the ways in which they could possibly start up their own businesses.
“This school rocks, man! The skills and knowledge gained from it can be applied in every-day life. They make the learning easier and fun! And hopefully profitable some day! I’ve always wanted to be the boss of myself. This school opened my eyes and showed me which areas I have to improve in order to succeed,”-said Ljupco Zlatev, third year student from Kavadarci.
The first summer school for 21st Century employability skills was a great experience for the students. They explored many different skills and competencies: IT skills, creativity, open minded thinking, debating, self-analysis, and teamwork. If this network of talented kids represents the nature of most of the young people in our country, we don’t have to worry about our future.
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