For the past three years, Ukraine has a challenge – to develop the economy in a situation of military conflict. This situation is often compared with the conditions in which modern Israel is. Being in a hostile environment and under the constant threat of military escalation, Israel succeeded in building a successful, innovative economy. At the same time, Israel had worse starting positions than Ukraine: acute shortage of natural resources, difficult climate, small territory.
Today, this country is number one in the world by the number of patents per capita, the level of development of startups, the manufacture and export of medical equipment. Israel is among the top three in the world in terms of the budget for education. This is the only country in the world with GDP per capita of over $ 40 thousand, and this figure grows annually by more than 4%. Israel’s GDP per capita is already higher than in most European countries (eg Spain, Portugal, Italy, France). The 2016 Israeli army was recognized as the most technologically advanced in the world.
This progress was the result of the fact that Israel, which has long been an agricultural country, has been focusing on the development of a high-tech sector. This is a very rational solution, since Israel’s key asset is people. As, by the way, and in Ukraine. But in order to realize the potential of this asset in the high-tech area, a well-established system of training qualified personnel is necessary. Israel managed to create such a system when the issue of providing personnel to its army was decided.
As you know, service in the army is mandatory for all Israelis from 18 years old. The conscripts, corresponding to a number of parameters, undergo detailed testing at Mamram, the center of the computer and information systems of the Israeli army. Those who have the potential to become a programmer are enrolled in the army training courses for IT specialists, with prior knowledge of programming is optional. After eight months of intensive training, they enter service programmers at Mamram.
If the regular service in the army lasts for three years, then work in Mamram is seven years to compensate for free tuition. At the end of this period, the 25-year-old demobilized returns to a civilian life by an experienced specialist and easily finds high-paying high-tech work. And today in Israel, 8 million people in the population account for 200 thousand specialists working in the high-tech sector.
The question is whether it is possible to repeat this experience in Ukraine. Experts estimate that 100 thousand IT specialists work in Ukraine, and this is a big room for growth. Of course, it makes no sense to talk about the creation of an analog in Ukraine, Mamram, is a matter for the state, not a private initiative. Nevertheless, it is possible to repeat in your country what we did in Israel – to adapt the Mamram system for civilian IT education.
After my service at Mamram, I opened a training center in Israel called John Bryce Training. It is based on a similar idea and has an identical process of admission and learning that of Mamram. Moreover, we have attracted potential employers, software developers to support the relevance of the educational process and to help our graduates with employment. Today, John Bryce Training holds 70% of the Israeli IT education market, we also opened branches in China, Turkey and Hungary. And now we are going to convey the approach of Israeli education to the IT education of Ukraine. I am sure that this will help to bring here a new generation of highly skilled IT specialists.
Posted by Eran Lasser, co-founder of DAN.IT education