As part of FESPA’s ‘Profit for Purpose’ programme, FESPA and its event partner ARED reinvested 50,000 Turkish Lire from revenues from the FESPA Eurasia exhibition into vocational training at the Izmir Konak Mersinli Mesleki ve Teknik Anadolu Lisesi (Mersinli Vocational and Technical Training Anatolian College).
The aim of the investment was to educate students and develop their expertise, to help towards resolving the issue of unskilled workforce in the Turkish print sector. The new course for advertising graphics opened in the 2014-2015 academic year, and has attracted large numbers of student enrolments. When the course started in 2014, 28 students were enrolled, who are now senior class students. In the 2015-2016 educational year, the number of students for this course has grown to 44.
Feedback from teachers, students and the college head reflects the positive progress of the course since 2014.
Ismet Uslu, Course Leader, explains the programme and the technology they have installed: “The funds enabled the creation of new laboratories at the college. We can teach our students one-to-one, giving them hands on experience of CorelDraw and Photoshop software used in digital print creation. Our students make digital print applications onto vinyl and canvas, working with digital printers and plotters donated by ARED members. Visiting experts give lectures on digital print and materials. At the moment, there are 26 computers for the student and teacher, a projector and screen, and a smart board.”
College Head Enver Türkoğlu recalls how the development of the new programme was based on a proposal from the teachers: “Our school opened in 1982. Our teachers made a proposal saying ‘we need to move beyond stereotyped jobs’. I supported this perspective as I already knew that stepping into new areas is always useful.