Ukraine's emerging IT sector provides a great opportunity for today's students to participate in an improved economy and achieve greater financial success, but first it is necessary to improve their comfort level and competency with modern technologies. Ukraine's teachers are not currently equipped with the knowledge and skills necessary to facilitate this by using technology in the educational process. Therefore, we propose to create a series of training workshops to empower teachers and students, particularly women, by building these critical IT skills. This will help further realize their economic potential, advancing the teachers' academic careers, and creating greater conditions for stability and prosperity in the students' lives through better career skills, more effective independent work, and greater creativity. These workshops will take place at a local college over two overnight sessions. The college will provide facilities, equipment, refreshments, and staff. Area teachers will be invited to attend workshops with professional trainers in innovative teaching methods based on multimedia information and communications platforms, as well as a workshop on personal financial management. The trainers and up to five teachers from more distant locations will be provided with accommodations. These workshops will build on each other to increase the teachers' comfort level and knowledge regarding these methods. At the end of these training sessions, teachers will receive certificates for their professional attestations. Methodological monitoring will be used to confirm that teachers are using these new methods in the classroom. To enable teachers to use multimedia in the classroom more often, we will purchase a convenient combination tablet and projector for use in our college.
The counterpart of the volunteer at this site recently took on the role of methodologist at our college and has decided to address this great problem in her region. She has observed that although our teachers have access to projects, they do not use them due to a lack of laptops as well as technological competency. And, though they would like to improve their technological competency, they find that courses on the topic are difficult to take due to a lack of time and funding. To resolve this, she has devised this project and received approval from the college and regional educational administration. The college will be providing logistical support including classrooms, equipment, and staff. Local businesses will provide lodging and meals for trainers and any visiting teachers. The professional trainers will be from an organization that is part of the Ukrainian Ministry of Education and Science, from which she has received training in the past. The financial literacy workshop will be designed and delivered by a finance teacher from our college, who already teaches courses on this subject.
Sustainability will be achieved in three different ways: through attending teachers, through their students, and through community members who organize the project. Teachers who attend the training sessions will acquire critical knowledge and skills that they will bring back to their educational institutions. They will then share this knowledge with their current and future colleagues. Once this foundation of information is in the college, they will not need to continue to pay to take such training courses. They may share and build upon it on their own. In the classroom, these teachers will share this knowledge with their students, and use the techniques acquired throughout the educational process. This will lead to greater capacity in additional students every year, and therefore greater stability and prosperity within the community as a whole, going forward. The members of the college helping to apply for this grant and organize the project are gaining valuable leadership and planning experience for any similar projects in the future. The female teacher who will conduct the financial training workshop will not only gain experience in workshop design and leadership, but will have a prepared workshop that may be updated, improved, and presented again to different audiences.