Modern Training Programs – Expanding Opportunities of Ukrainian Regions
In late October 2011, RGD launched the Adult Learning Program (ALP), which was developed as part of the National Training Program (NTP), and focuses on improving skills to develop curricula and deliver training in regional economic development (RED) to adult participants. The first training module, focused on foundations of adult learning, limitations of the learning process, needs assessment of training groups and practical training sessions delivered by participants, was held between October 27 – November 2and November 10 – 16, 2011 at the Dnipropetrovsk and Lviv Regional Institutes of Public Administration, respectively. In total 65 participants from 12 regions of Ukraine and the Autonomous Republic of Crimea took part in the ALP’s first training module. Among them were civil servants, representatives of regional in-service training centers, state authorities, local governments, universities and NGOs. Participants were asked about their expectations for the ALP. Selected answers included that they hoped the training would enable them “to become able to establish contact with and effectively convince adult audience”, “to become able to overcome trainees’ prejudiced attitude towards the trainer”, “to develop modern training programs”, and “to become a trainer in their target area, such as strategic planning”.
ALP participants were also driven by the need to study new methods in adult education, as well as by the opportunity to develop modern, interactive, practical curricula in RED based on RGD’s best practices and experience, and implement them in their oblast. Although most of the ALP participants believe that they have significant working experience in training civil servants, the ALP training sessions attracted them to participate and explore new tools and teaching techniques. Specifically, participants believe that the ALP will provide opportunities for fulfilling practical assignments, ongoing consultations with trainers and other trainees, as well as integrating newly obtained knowledge with existing experience.
Vitaliy Ayrapetyan from Crimea shares his impressions: “Many of us have already felt the need not to just learn something new, but to master new learning methods and tools. While I design my own training during the ALP, I will also learn the new methods to deliver it in the future. Although I deliver various trainings and lectures on a regular basis, new experience in applying interactive adult learning methods will come in handy. Moreover, I will apply some of the new techniques I learnt during the 1st module right away after I return from the training. That is why participating in this training program is very important to me.”The first ALP module required participants to develop and deliver mini-training for their colleagues by applying adult learning methods just learned. Participants enjoyed this practical exercise through which they designed and delivered some interesting training sessions, such as “Design approach: real-world examples”, “Possible sources of project financing”, “Main means of communication: civil servants’ non-verbal communication”, “High-quality water as a guarantee of high-quality life”, etc. As an incentive for completing the ALP, all participants received letters of support issued by Directors of the regional in-service training centers or other relevant public institutions, stating that following the Adult Learning Program completion, they will be eligible to teach in these centers based on the newly developed curricula.