The ESF is helping Poland to train the highly qualified workers needed by companies in growing technology-led sectors. Improvements to the education system and better links between universities and industry are boosting innovation and the supply of skilled graduates. There are also many opportunities for job-seekers from vulnerable groups to get new skills and improve their job prospects.
With increasing job opportunities in the services and technology industries, Poland is using ESF support to give job-seekers and workers the new skills they need to enter these sectors. The whole education system is being modernised, including better vocational training and more lifelong learning opportunities. Students are offered industry-relevant courses – for example in industrial robotics – that enable them to move directly into productive jobs. Postgraduate courses in teaching are on offer to people from many backgrounds – scientists, engineers and managers – to ensure the education system is staffed with skilled and experienced teachers and trainers. And many ESF projects are strengthening the links between universities and companies to ensure the flow of highly qualified workers that can support innovation and growth.
Entrepreneurship is also encouraged with practical help for a people from a variety of backgrounds – from science graduates to women living in rural environments – to get trained, access finance and set up their business.
People who face difficulties in getting work are receiving ESF support. These include older workers who need new skills, young job-seekers who want a first chance, women with children, or people with disabilities who want to work. As well as suitable training opportunities for these groups, the ESF is encouraging the setting up of social enterprises – for example, self-help organisations for homeless people and ex-offenders that can focus on the particular problems they face.
Regional employment centres are playing a big role in helping many thousands of the long-term unemployed, women with childcare needs and other vulnerable groups to get back to work. They offer tailored support, including through personal career advisors, help with job applications and by working in partnership with employers. And a wide variety of ESF projects are addressing young job-seekers. One example is a project to help arts and humanities students to set up in self-employment and apply their creative skills in their work.