It was worth it

Every active minute is a good minute, Krzysztof Sojka likes to say. He is a PE teacher, actor, dancer and fitness instructor, living and working in Gliwice. Although he’s terribly busy, he found the time and motivation to empower his professional position in the very midst if a pandemic. He improved his language and digital skills. Today, he concludes it briefly: it was worth it.

The photograph shows Katarzyna Kuboś. The woman, with long red hair, is dressed in a white shirt.

Katarzyna Kuboś,
Project Coordinator from Science and Technology Park “Technopark Gliwice”

Since the beginning of our activity, i.e. since 2004, supporting the local community in professional activation and improving their competences has been one of our high priorities. We have implemented many projects thanks to which the unemployed have found satisfying work and the employed have improved their qualifications or acquired new skills. We now have extensive experience and a great background to develop even more. We continue to reach for EU funds, which we direct to the organization of vocational and language courses.

This time, we targeted residents of revitalized areas of Gliwice. Support was directed to working people, primarily from disadvantaged groups, that is, those with the greatest barriers to accessing education, including those with low skills and over 50 years of age.

As part of the project, we offered free 60 hours of English, German and French language courses. The classes were conducted by a well-known language school in Gliwice and took place in the city center. The timetable was set together with the participants. Due to the epidemic threat, the last class was held online. The courses ended with an external exam and a certificate. We also held a digital competency (ICT) course. There was a lot of interest in the project. A total of nearly 250 residents benefited, which confirms that the activities were well thought out and efficiently conducted.

Krzysztof Sojka,
project participant

I was offered to participate in the project by the headmaster of the school where I teach physical education. This was in early September 2020, so at the dawn of a new school year, when we all felt a bit uncertain and confused. None of us knew what teaching would look like. Improving computer skills turned out to be very useful. I learned to proficiently use MS Office, specifically Microsoft Teams, which helped me when I was teaching classes online. When schools closed for sanitary reasons, I quickly adapted to the new situation. I know many colleagues have had more trouble with this.

Gliwice Technopark also offered me a free English course, which I find useful during my various professional duties. And there are actually quite a few of them. In addition to my work at school, I teach fitness classes, I am a dance instructor, and I work as an actor for the Iwia Musical Theatre. I also travel a lot with my wife and daughters. We love travelling but the language barrier was always a bit of a trouble. The course gave me more confidence and helped me to improve my grammar and vocabulary.

I am currently trying to become an appointed teacher. The new knowledge and skills will definitely help me develop and achieve this goal. But upgrading your skills also gives you confidence, both in professional and private life. Looking back, I know that not taking advantage of these free courses would have been a mistake. I’m glad I didn’t commit it.

The photograph shows Krzysztof Sojka. The bald man with stubble and glasses is standing in a school gym. He is wearing sport clothes and holds a basketball in his hands.

Project

TECHNOPARK’s Academy for improving language and ICT skills of adult residents of Gliwice
Beneficiary: Science and Technology Park “Technopark Gliwice” Sp. z o.o.
Value of the project: ca. 475 thousand PLN
ROP SV subsidy: over 400 thousand PLN
Implementation period: August 2018 - February 2021