The workshop “W3 Sustainable VET and approaches in future” was organised by Tknika and Basque VET centres with participants from CIFP Aretxabaleta LHII, CIFP Blas de Lezo LHII, CIFP Meka LHII, Nazaret and CIFP Usurbil LHII Vocational Centres.
The aim of the workshop was to reflect and debate on sustainability as the only means to create a better future for both ourselves and the planet. It also aimed at giving and finding solutions and showing some case studies which are already heading this way.
Participants had the opportunity to discuss the following questions:
- What can citizens do to boost energy transition?
- What can VET centers do? What kind of skills should VET centers work on for a greener working life by 2030?
- How to promote cooperation between the community, the colleges and the companies for a sustainable future?
The general consensus was that individual citizens have a say in this matter. It is up to each and everyone to use more public transport, electrical vehicles, cleaner heating systems… The idea of a 0km economy was also raised in the discussion.
As for the implication of VET schools, the idea that it is to VET centers, civil society and policy-makers to lead the example was unanimous. Awareness should be raised to the students by integrating topics related to sustainability in the curriculum and also maintain a positive attitude as they should not loose faith in the future.
The cooperation between the community and companies should be promoted by giving visibility to good practices, organising informative days in companies and working with greener industries. Action should also be taken in the schools to organizing different kind of networks involving alumni networks and companies.
All the ideas mentioned in the debates are put into practice now, in order to prepare a better future. VET schools all over Europe are already changing to green.
Aretxabaleta LHII presented a project about about electromobility transformation in which students and teachers are working on, changing a combustion engine into an electric one. Several automotive departments from different schools also participated in the Euskelec initiative. Students designed and built electric cars to participate in a kind of rally competition with their own vehicles. This is an initiative is promoted by the Basque Government and Tknika.
Usurbil LHII showcased an energy model change towards a distributed renewable energy system. The center showed there was a new way to generate, manage and distribute renewable energies locally, a way into which VET students are already working on. They are getting specialised in the building and management of renewable sources of cleaner energy.
A green transition is also of paramount importance in the seas, as explained during the presentation of the Plug in hybrid vessel project leaded by Blas de Lezo LHII, a maritime school. They have researched and developed technologies towards zero emission coastal vessels. Although zero emissions are not technically possible yet, they are working towards the objective.
What new skills are expected? What are the skills of the future? The interest of these three examples is that students are involved in them. What can we do together? It is up to VET schools, and other stakholders all over Europe to collaborate and innovate to create networks in order to inspire and share and to involve other countries outside Europe. We need to think globally and act locally.
International cooperation is needed in the VET centers in order to prepare the students as the future working force for a better future in a more sustainable planet. It is of high importance to make sure that the right skills are in the hands of the students and that they become lifelong learners. Using James Cllejas’s words, SUSTAINABILITY WILL DETERMINE THE FUTURE OF VET.