Bulgaria's Education Ministry, It Sector Sign Cooperation Deal
Bulgaria's Education Ministry and the country's software companies associations signed Thursday a deal hoping to boost the links between the education and market needs in the ever growing IT industry.
The goal is to increase cooperation in writing schoolbooks, improving curricula and teachers' skills and, as a result, helping address the skills gap among students as IT companies are struggling to find tens of thousands of qualified employees.
On the government side, the text was signed by outgoing Education Minister Meglena Kuneva, who announced her institution had registered the term "applied programmer" in the list of dual education professions.
Earlier, the government and the Bulgarian Association of Software Companies (BASSCOM) launched a project, initially funded by the association, that will set up dual education IT classes in several schools across Bulgaria, preparing "applied programmers', or employees for IT companies.
Business organizations that became signatories were BASSCOM, the Bulgaria Association of Information Technology (BAIT), the , the Bulgarian Outsourcing Association (BOA) and the ICT Cluster.
President Rosen Plevneliev also attended the event.
"Today's agreement is a big step forward. Hundreds of adolescents will be trained in the professions of the future, this will help young people to stay," local media quote Plevneliev as saying.
The software industry expected to reach a share of 2% of Bulgaria's GDP within a year.
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