IT students are very familiar with the international company DataArt. DataArt, with the support of the Faculty of Applied Mathematics, Informatics, and Mechanics of Voronezh State University, has been holding free courses in the following areas at DataArt School: DataArt Android School, DataArt QA School, VSU&DataArt iOS School, etc. Since 2013, the company has also been organising summer educational practical training and in 2019 there were 200 students among its participants.
This year, the university and its partner companies were pushed to switch to online educational projects and events. It seems that online activities are not just a temporary solution that imposes some limits. On the contrary, they open up new opportunities. DataArt is a good case to prove this. Elena Fedorova, HRM Director of the Voronezh DataArt Development Centre, told us what the students’ practical training will be like in 2020.
“What was student summer practical training normally like at your company?”
“We are engaged in close collaboration with Voronezh State University. We support both educational projects and student festivals and competitions. We meet young specialists in their very first years at the university and at the beginning of each academic year we invite them to visit an open day at our company where they can meet experts, learn about technologies and career opportunities, and become familiar with our office. At the end of the year, we hold summer educational practical training. Traditionally, it was like this: we met students at out conference hall and leading specialists from the Voronezh DataArt Development Centre gave lecturers dedicated to the most popular programming languages, testing, and business analyses. It was face-to-face communication: anybody could ask a question to an expert and groups of students were given practical tasks to solve.”
“How is it going to change this year?”
“When we understood that the epidemiological situation was not stable, we decided against offline classes in order to avoid risks. From the very beginning, we announced that the summer educational practical training would be held online. I should explain that distance learning is a normal practice in our company. We have teams of specialists who work in offices in Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Argentina, and Bulgaria. When developing online practical courses, we took into consideration our many-year experience in the distance teaching of our staff and our experience of interacting with universities from Russia and other countries.
What is going to change? First of all, the lectures. Now, it is webinars. They will be broadcast in the evening, two lectures a day. The students will have the opportunity to ask questions when they submit their applications. We will process all the questions, sort them out, and send them to experts prior to their talks. What’s more, all viewers will have a chance to ask questions during the broadcast. Secondly, the experts. There are no geographical restrictions any more. That’s why we decided to make it international this year and invited experts from abroad. Some lectures will be in the English language. This is a good opportunity to remind students that English for IT specialists is must-have. We already held online practical training for senior students this spring and the format proved to be effective.”
“How are you going to engage students in the learning process?”
“We have many plans. There will be tests and interactive competitions. We will ask our colleagues from abroad to give short talks about the IT industry and their local DataArt development centre. We will help our students to see how programmers live and work in other countries.”
“How can you apply and who can take part in the summer practical training?”
You can submit an application online until 12 June. The lectures will be held between 1 and 10 June 2020 from 7 to 10 p.m. Anybody can take part in the event. On 25 and 26 June, we will hold introductory meetings where we will give the students all the details and will answer any questions.