E2E story – Basic Check test – a path leading to the career choice

E2E story – Basic Check test – a path leading to the career choice

Knjaževac: Talks with career practitioners, the career quiz, competency cards, and the Basic Check, are only some of the tools which the “Education to Employment” programme offers to young people to help them make decisions regarding their future profession.


A modern online platform called Basic Check test has been on offer since last year. It was designed by Swiss experts and it was customised to suit our environment. This test offers its users an opportunity to check their general and specific cognitive competences.


It was the Basic Check test that showed to seventeen-years-old Deana Simić, a 3rd grade student of Knjaževac gymnasium, that psychology studies are the way to go after she finished the gymnasium.


“Interestingly, I heard for the Basic Check test from my mom.  Namely, she knows that I like this kind of checks, tests, psycho–tests, and thought this to be the right thing for me. She was not wrong. The test is very interesting and exciting and the time allowed for its completion flies by. I believe that I managed quite well, just as I have expected, when mathematic is concerned. The test confirmed that the university school I want to enrol is the right thing for me. And I am talking about psychology here,” Deana told us about her experience.



She added that, despite the deeply-rooted misconception that young people do not think a lot about their future, young men and women from her school feel quite positive about the direction they want to take after they finish their secondary school. The teachers also help them create their future by talking with them and referring them to extracurricular lessons in those areas for which they have shown affinity.


Career practitioner Sanja Džakula said that the students of Knjaževac gymnasium had the best results at the Basic Check test.


“In most cases, the gymnasium students’ results coincided with the university studies they wanted to pursue. Many of them had excellent results in all the areas covered by the test, which means that, in principle, they can choose whichever studies they want,” Džakula said.


Text and photo: Ljiljana Pavlović / Edited by: Sandra Vlatković


E2E story – Career counselling: How to choose the right profession

E2E story – Career counselling: How to choose the right profession

Knjaževac: During the last month, Timok Club, broker of the “Education to Employment” programme, organised the group career counselling for 155 young people from Knjaževac, Aleksinac, Svrljig, and Ražanj, while individual sessions and Basic Check test were organised with 23 and 35 young men and women, respectively.


Coronavirus pandemic changes many things, but the greatest changes were seen in the functioning of the educational system. Schools were forced to shift to online ‘distance’ education and thus extracurricular activities and ‘in person’ contact with teachers, pedagogues, and  career counsellors were absent.


When the measures were relaxed, Timok Club, broker of the “Education to Employment” programme, visited primary and secondary schools in South-Eastern Serbia and talked with young people about how to make their career choice.



“We had an extremely dynamic spring and the beginning of summer; we talked with a large number of primary school pupils and secondary school students in Knjaževac, Svrljig, Ražanj, Aleksinac. We made sure that, in the end of the schoolyear, young people are informed about the possibilities to continue their education. With secondary school leavers we discussed the higher education institutions existing in the country, and with primary school pupils we discussed the offer of secondary schools in their municipalities,” Timok Club practitioner Sanja Džakula said for our portal.


She believes that, in most cases, young people are very decisive with regard to what they want to do in life after they leave secondary schools.


“We tried to advise them to think hard and imagine themselves in the job they want to do, this decision being of vital importance for their future taking into account that they will be doing it for the next 40 years. They should also develop the skills they already have and adopt new ones, because nowadays nothing can be ‘settled’. They may finish one school, and then life can take them in quite another direction,” Džakula said.


In the premises of the Timok Club or in their own schools, young people were completing the Basic Check test through which they had the opportunity to check their knowledge and competences, as well as in what way they need to improve themselves so as to continue their education.


Text and photo: Ljiljana Pavlović / Edited by: Sandra Vlatković


E2E story – Presentations in the school for adults and nearby villages

E2E story – Presentations in the school for adults and nearby villages

Kruševac: The representatives of the Educational Centre, organisation which is implementing the “Education to Employment” programme in Rasina County, visited the villages around Kruševac and organised a presentation of the programme in the school for primary education of adults with the aim to ensure that information about work-Based Learning (WBL) courses implemented within this Project  reach all prospective candidates.


When visiting rural communities, they talked with the secretaries, explained the nature of the courses, and left flyers and promotional material for the youth of this region.


“The idea was to visit the villages in the vicinity of Kruševac, to reach young people who live in that region, to inform them about the professions for which they can train within our Project, as well as to motivate them to get involved,” Sanja Nikolić from Educational Centre, the “Education to Employment” project’s  person responsible for Work-Based Learning (WBL), said.



Visiting the school for primary education of adults, which is operational within Kruševac “Vuk Karadžić“ primary school, is yet another among the activities aimed at finding the candidates for work-based learning.


“The representatives of this school are very eager to involve their students in the work-based learning programme, for the professions which are currently in demand. Their students are young people who acquire primary education in this school but also expect to gain some specific practical knowledge which could, in the long term, provide for them the opportunity to earn their living, so that this programme is exactly what they need,” she said.


Most of the students of the above-mentioned school belong to the population younger than 35 – which means that they are eligible for the “Education to Employment” programme.


Now available for the prospective candidates are the training courses for welders, locksmiths, CNC operators, warehouse workers, and, since recently, operators in cardboard packaging production and sewers.


Nikolić mentioned that the candidates rarely decide on the training for welders and CNC operators because they believe that these jobs are strenuous.


She added that coronavirus epidemic also contributed since it reduced the visibility of the training organised within this Project. Namely, there were no employment fairs and, for the most part of the year, it was impossible to hold informative sessions in schools. Moreover, large Kruševac companies such as “Kromberga”, “Henkel”, and “Kupera” have, in the recent period, intensively looked for workers in similar professions.


Within the last cycle of the “Education to Employment” project, work-based learning courses were implemented in “Milošević doo” company in which about thirty trainees learnt how to do a job of the warehouse worker, as well as in “Breza” wood-processing shop where a CNC operator was trained.


At present training for waiters is taking place in two coffeeshops in Kruševac and in one coffeeshop in Trstenik.


Text and photo: Jelena Božović / Edited by: Sandra Vlatković


E2E story – A half of trainees got a job

E2E story – A half of trainees got a job

Pirot: A three-month training for six road workers-to-be that has started in “Drumovi A.d.“ company in Pirot is the last in a series of WBL courses within the “Education to Employment” programme organised by the Job Info centre, partner on the project.


Jovana Božilović, a career counsellor in the Job Info Centre in Pirot, said that two training courses have finished – for children’s personal escorts and warehouse workers.



“The training for children’s personal escort, attended by five trainees, was organised in cooperation with the Association of persons with mental disability (PMDs) in Pirot, while the training for warehouse workers was organised in “Marmil“ company. It is particularly important that 50 percent of young people who have completed training for these two professions got a job – which is the goal of the “Education to Employment” project,” Božilović said.


She added that now underway are training courses for CNC operators in textile industry, taking place in “Lisca“ company in Babušnica, and for sellers in “Marmil“ company.


“The goal of WBL is that practical training be organised in the companies which need specific personnel. On the other hand, youth get the opportunity to gain practical experience and subsequently get employment,” Božilović stressed.


According to her, this year the “Education to Employment” project was expanded to include Nišava County.


“This year we expanded our career counselling to include young people from the territory of the City of Niš. We have good cooperation with Niš Youth Office and Scientific/Technological Park of this city, and we plan some further activities in this city. Two public calls were made for training courses in Niš and Gadžin Han. The training for six trainees for the profession of optical production operator will take place in “Photon optronics“ company in Niš, and six trainees will undergo training for the profession of a welder in “Resor d.o.o.“ company in Gadžin Han. The duration of each of these courses will be three months,” Božilović said.


She pointed out that the JOB Info centre carries out two groups of activities – on-the-job training and career counselling.


“In the recent period increasingly more eighth-graders have turned to us wishing to get help in choosing their future professions. We also organise career counselling for secondary school students as well as for university students in Pirot and Niš,” Božilović said.



Call for employers


“Besides the call for youth and on-the-job training, we also made a call for employers who are interested in implementing the “Employees to Fit Your Business“ programme within this project. We invite the employers to contact us so that they can more easily acquire skilled labour. We will also gather young people and inform them about the profiles that are in demand on labour market,” Božilović said.


Text: Zoran Panić / Edited by: Sandra Vlatković


Photo Z.Panić and archive of the JOB Info centre




E2E story – Getting practice for a job that is in demand and well-paid

E2E story – Getting practice for a job that is in demand and well-paid

Kruševac: The representatives of the “Education to Employment” project presented to the final-year students of the First Technical School in Kruševac – the departments for CNC operators, welders, and mechanic of cooling devices – the possibilities for on-the-job training implemented within that Project, and informed them about the possibilities of career guidance and counselling. 


“Our idea was to promote, among the students who have just finished secondary school, the possibility for them to acquire additional skills and knowledge, and primarily the practice relating to the profession for which they went to school,” Sanja Nikolić from the Kruševac Educational Centre said. She is in charge of WBL in the “Education to Employment” programme.


According to her, WBL has enabled those young people to discover whether they really want those professions to be the professions of their life. The trainees who like the job could stay and work because all companies which applied for training need new workers.



She mentioned that the opportunity offered by one of those companies is particularly interesting.


“Youth needs to be explained all the possibilities. One of the companies which implements the training offers them opportunity to work independently later; namely, to start their own business and use the company’s equipment, premises, and commercial associates – something like an incubator,” she explained.


Youth were distributed flyers with information about the services provided within the “Education to Employment” programme, that is the contact-data of the persons they may contact about the WBL as well as career counselling.


“Ever since the schools opened, our focus has been on the informative sessions. We strived to ensure that as many students as possible are informed about what we do because the time we could spend in school was short – the duration of lessons was half an hour,” representatives of the “Education to Employment” project explained.


Career guidance and counselling here is linked with competences and the inclusion of young people in the WBL, with the contact with the employers with whom they acquired practical knowledge about whatever they learnt in school.  


“At the same time, we drew their attention to career guidance and counselling considering that some of them will continue their education,” Tijana Stefanović from the Educational Centre said. She is also a career counsellor in the “Education to Employment” project.



Two of them confirmed that this is about specific professions which are in demand and well-paid, but which young people perceive as hard and demanding.


“Young people rarely decide on those professions because they believe that they are arduous. Also, the training lasts a long time and one needs to commit to it. We try to motivate the youth, to call them again and additionally explain everything they need to know,” Tijana Stefanović said.


Text and photo: Jelena Božović / Edited by: Sandra Vlatković