The vocational school complex in Hajnówka is changing. Thanks to Norwegian funds, an environmental laboratory was created. Julia Szypulska March 7, 2024

The vocational school complex in Hajnówka is changing. Thanks to Norwegian funds, an environmental laboratory was created.

Classes started this school year. Students of the construction technical school have at their disposal a modernly equipped laboratory where they learn how to operate devices such as a heat pump, photovoltaic panels and a recuperator.

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

The new subject and the equipment for the workshop are part of the project “Hajnówka ReNewal – Green Transformation”. Its implementation was handled by the Hajnówka District Starost’s Office, which is a partner in the project and the managing authority of the construction technical school. However, before the city and the district office signed the cooperation agreement, preparatory work began in early 2020. An in-depth diagnosis was made of the potential of Hajnówka itself and of the district, as well as of the elements to be improved. Among other things, it showed the need to launch measures to adapt teaching in Hajnówka’s vocational schools to the requirements of the modern labour market. The official opening of the workshop took place on Tuesday (5.03).

- Within the framework of this project, the district was given five tasks. Because of two tasks, you are here today. The first task was to create a specialisation related to renewable energy sources at the building technical school, and the second task was to create a workshop where students could acquire practical skills.

Nina Łukasik, Head of the Social Affairs Department of the Hajnówka District Office

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

Technical support was provided to the district by the Białystok University of Technology, specifically by Agnieszka Dardzińska-Głębocka, Ph. Representatives of the leading authority were consulted during the development of the original programme of study. The remarks of the university’s academics were taken into account before the programme was included in the school’s set of programmes.

- I am very pleased that such a laboratory on renewable energy, or rather methods of obtaining it, has been created. I believe that this is a very good, future-oriented course. In this way, you will be able to educate staff at this school, who will have an interesting professional future.

Agnieszka Dardzińska-Głębocka, PhD, Białystok University of Technology

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

The school management wondered where to locate the workshop. The choice fell on the old workroom. The building and its machinery had been unused for years and was in need of major renovation. So, before modern equipment arrived, the building underwent extensive modernisation. The electrics were replaced, new floors laid and the walls leveled. The rooms now look brand new and bear little resemblance to the old switchgear.

The workshop consists of a workshop room and a backroom. The latter provides storage for equipment, tools and consumables. There is a heat pump, a solar tube collector and a recuperator (used to recover energy from the air and to circulate air in the room). The workshop, on the other hand, has a total of 14 workstations and, importantly, the number can be increased if necessary. There is also a cupboard with the necessary tools, e.g. knives, crimping tools and screwdrivers – it contains everything a student needs to work with wiring or piping. Each assembly table, meanwhile, has additional lighting, which they can adjust.

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

An interactive monitor is a useful tool that makes work very easy. On it, students can see what the teacher is doing on the desk. This is possible thanks to the desk visualiser. Different types of material can also be displayed on the screen, e.g. videos, photos, other material prepared by the teacher. The equipment in the laboratory also includes computers. Here, typical office work such as costing or 3D design can be carried out in no time at all. A 3D printer can be used to print out, for example, handles, clamps or other additional parts which are not in stock.

- In this subject, students will primarily learn how to operate how equipment works. The subject lasts from second to fifth grade. Admittedly, after this time the pupils will not obtain the right to practice the profession themselves, but they will have acquired the necessary skills and knowledge, only to be confirmed by a certificate.

Kornel Oliwier Godończuk, vocational RES teacher at the Vocational School Complex in Hajnówka

Pupils have already become accustomed to the new workshop. The class is divided into two groups to make it more comfortable. The pupils know their place, they know where everything is. They handle the assembly tables and tool cabinets efficiently.

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

Fot. Starostwo Powiatowe w Hajnówce

- I would like to thank the starosty and the Białystok University of Technology for their participation in this project. The laboratory is a concrete result of our Norwegian project. Young people can learn on new equipment, gain new skills. I hope that in the future this will encourage them to set up businesses, and that Hajnówka will in time become such a centre for renewable energy. I also hope that this project will contribute to young people choosing Hajnówka schools.

Ireneusz Kiendyś, Deputy Mayor of Hajnówka

The authorities of the Hajnówka poviat regard the newly created RES laboratory as another step towards fulfilling their dreams.

- I am proud, because this is another brick that contributes to the development of RES in the Hajnówka district. We are the only district that had a functioning programme in place when it comes to RES. The cooperation with the German partner has put us a step or two ahead of others and we need to take advantage of this. We have photovoltaic installations on practically all our facilities in Hajnówka and beyond. This was a step in the right direction and I hope it will continue in the future.

Andrzej Skiepko, Hajnówka starost

At the moment, there is a subject dedicated to renewable energy sources in the Vocational School. Is there a chance that a direction will be created in the future? It is possible. As Mirosława Szpilko, director of the ZSZ in Hajnówka, emphasises, a lot depends on the interest of young people.

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