[TechUkraine news] New Educational Cluster “INNOVATION CAMPUS” In Kharkiv

On the basis of the National Technical University “Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute” (NTU “KhPI”) the “Innovation Campus” has opened. A modern educational cluster allows to combine a high level of theoretical training of classical university education and obtaining relevant skills (technical, economic, managerial and communicational) while working on real practical tasks.

The project started in 2018 at the initiative of the rector of NTU “KhPI” Yevgen Sokol and the founder of the UFuture holding company, chairman of the Supervisory Board of NTU “KhPI” Vasyl Khmelnytsky. A fundamentally new technology for training IT specialists, which includes the transition from a declarative to a project-based learning scheme, has received support from the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine.
The Innovation Campus project is being implemented in several stages. At the first stage ucode IT academy specialists (funded by UFuture) in cooperation with NTU “KhPI” developed a four-year innovative educational program, the recruitment of which began in September 2019. Its participants were students of two departments of KhPI: Software Engineering and Intelligent Management Technologies, Computer Engineering and Programming. After the first year of study at KhPI (introduction to the specialty and fundamental disciplines), students passed a competitive selection (4-week marathon) to move to the work on projects based on the gamification and peer-to-peer approach (2-3rd year of study). The fourth year is devoted to the in-depth study of subjects, practice and senior thesis at the university. During their studies, students have internships in leading Ukrainian IT companies, including GlobalLogic and MobiDev, and the most successful receive offers from them for further employment. Students do not leave the university, but work and study on the principle of dual education.
The project includes the renovation of a two-story building of the former university’s canteen of ​​2700 square meters. The construction was supposed to be carried out at the expense of the state budget and budget of NTU “KhPI”. Due to delays in funding at the end of 2020, UFuture together with Kharkiv-based NIX Solutions IT company decided to allocate UAH 8 million for the construction of the campus. The Vasyl Khmelnytsky Foundation K.FUND also provided UAH 10 million for campus equipment, including for the installation of 120 modern Apple computers.

An educational cluster and a conference hall were arranged on the first floor of the Innovation Campus of NTU “KhPI”. The second floor will have club offices, coworking spaces and meeting rooms: the work on its integration into a single ecosystem is still ongoing and is scheduled to be completed this year. The project provides a set of measures for the safety of residents: internal and external control of access to the building, 24/7 video surveillance, modern ventilation equipment. The building is equipped with an automatic system for saving energy resources. Up to 300 students can study on the campus. In 2021, the Innovation Campus of NTU “KhPI” was listed among the top 10 of more than 1,300 participants from 105 countries in the global competition QS-Wharton Reimagine Education Awards 2021, which rewards innovation in education.

“All modern technologies are gathered here: peer-to-peer learning approach, which means cooperation on equal terms, gamification, project training. All the tasks included in the program are taken from real companies that develop software. KhPI teachers methodically structured it so that students perceived the program well and moved forward. Two years are based on the pedagogical system with a unique curriculum. The practical part includes the main components of professional IT education. The Innovation Campus program will allow students not only to gain up-to-date technical and programming knowledge but also soft skills, i. e. analytical thinking, communication, empathy, emotional intelligence. Therefore, everyone who wants to learn, and who will learn, will receive the best knowledge, so a lucky ticket and the opportunity to build a successful career,” said Yevgen Sokol.