The UIC TALENT project is supporting UIC Members at global level in their efforts and initiatives to find solutions in order to better attract and retain the best talents in the job market.
UIC pays great attention to the connection and cooperation between academia and the railway industry and in the frame of the TALENT project has set up “Rail Uni Net”, a global network of universities offering rail training.
This global network, which is managed by NewRail – the Newcastle Centre for Railway Research and Education, is currently attended by universities from EU, North America, South America and Asia.
The purpose of the cooperation is to promote innovation in railway education and training through knowledge-sharing and joint ventures such as joint programmes, courses and projects.
Gen Y Rail is a new UK initiative (UKTITT-UK rail industry training trust) organised to set up a series of engagement and educational events for young people to showcase the types of careers and opportunities available in the rail industry. This event is organised in different regions of the UK and consists of engineering and design competitions for 12 to 19-year-olds, split into regional heats culminating in a national final. One team from each age group from each region goes through to the national final and the winning team from each age group will be crowned the UK Champions.
This type of initiative is an interesting way to promote the wide and diverse range of exciting careers on offer in the railway industry and is a great opportunity for students to get a chance to take part in hands-on engineering activities and hear more about the training, qualifications and apprenticeships available. The events also feature presentations from young apprentices and postgraduates already working in the railway industry to inspire and engage the students.
The first initiative of Gen Y Rail was organised on 13 February in Newcastle in cooperation with NewRail.
Following an invitation by NewRail, UIC participated in a workshop on “opportunities and needs for rail education and training”. The workshop which was jointly organised by NewRail and NSARE (National Skills Academy for Railway Engineering, UK), was well attended by various railway training stakeholders (training provider, university, college, foundation), and an employer (Hitachi) gave an interesting insight into the current training needs and opportunities on one side and the employers’ expectations and offerings on the other side.
The discussion during the workshop outlined the importance of knowledge-exchange between the various stakeholders; at the end a decision was taken to organise regular regional networking events of this kind.