Rector of Russia's first technical university Vladimir Litvinenko told about it during a meeting with students.
The Empress Catherine II Saint Petersburg Mining University held a ceremony of awarding educational grants to first-year students who won the School Leader competition. Its winners, in case they scored the required minimum threshold score on the USE, last summer received a guaranteed right to enrol in the university even before the final results of the admission campaign were announced.
The essence of the idea is that the applicants who have concluded a relevant agreement of intent with the Mining University and then got into the lists of those who were admitted on the "budget", study at the state expense. And those of them who lost the competition due to the fact that this year it became higher, received a grant from the university for the entire period of study.
Vladimir Litvinenko in his address to the students assured them that the management of the higher education institution had fulfilled all its promises to them. In particular, it gave them the right to priority choice of a place in the dormitory and a number of other benefits. He also spoke in detail about the university's participation in the pilot project aimed at improving the quality of engineering training.
"The real sector of the Russian economy does not need bachelors, but young specialists who will have a certain set of knowledge, skills and additional competences in IT, management, economics and a number of other areas already at the stage of graduation from their alma mater. That is why we are now fundamentally changing the system of higher education, creating a unified structure that will meet the needs of the labour market and contribute to the solution of state tasks. First of all, we need to restore the continuity of generations in the industry, partly lost today," the rector emphasised.
He assured the audience that "in two or three years, the bachelor's degree in technical universities will be abolished". After all, its curricula do not suit either employers, the academic community, or the students themselves, who, having received a diploma, experience difficulties with employment. In this regard, Vladimir Litvinenko suggested that young people who have enrolled in bachelor's degree programmes should transfer to specialisation.
"I would like you to support the initiatives we are implementing. The bachelor's degree will soon disappear, it will be gone. And for your employers, believe me, a bachelor's degree, which even today has no great value, will turn into a completely meaningless piece of paper. I'm not rushing anyone. Think about it for a month or two, consult with your parents and mates, and make an informed decision. In case someone wants to continue studying at the bachelor's programme, we will give him or her the opportunity to do so. But I would like to emphasise once again that all of you should understand that there are no jobs waiting for holders of bachelor's degrees. Perhaps you will be able to find a job somewhere, but the prospects of those who study under the specialisation curriculum, i.e. receive basic higher education, are obviously much rosier," the rector addressed the audience.
We would like to remind you that a distinctive feature of the current academic year is that for the first time in 20 years the number of budgetary places in the first year of specialisation at the Mining University was higher than in the first year of bachelor's degree - 982 against 940. This was a consequence of the higher education reform that was launched in the country on the initiative of President Vladimir Putin.