Dragana Radoicic, a Community Story from Montenegro
I was born in Podgorica in 1978. After graduating from the Faculty of Law in Podgorica, I started working in the High Vocational School “Ivan Uskokovic”, first as a law teacher, and then as a school secretary. I have been working in the field of adult education for the past eight years. In my opinion, adult education offers an inexhaustible wealth of knowledge and experience. I worked at an Adult Education Center, collecting the necessary documentation for obtaining licenses, organising the education programs, as well as engaging program providers, which always brings fresh energy and experience.
It is always a great pleasure to pursue activities in which I can make myself useful and motivate myself to further progress and learn.
This is the reason why I try to inform those around me about the benefits of lifelong learning, regardless of whether they are job seekers or between jobs, and about institutions that could implement programs in a high quality and professional manner. I found out about EPALE around five years ago at a training course organised by the Center for Vocational Education, aimed at representatives of other licensed organisers. The training co-ordinator was very convincing in his efforts to introduce us to the possibilities offered by the EPALE and he was exceptional at answering many questions. Later, through the organisation of conferences and seminars run by the EPALE team from Montenegro, adult education became more prominent. The information available on the EPALE platform has provided us with new knowledge and ideas for new opportunities.
The Coronavirus halted activities that I was pursuing in the field of adult education for a short period of time, but I quickly realised that I could use that time for further learning.
I have focused on improving my English language skills, which I have done via Skype. On the EPALE platform I have followed the experience of other countries. Moreover, high quality work in adult education required me to collect data, which has always been time consuming and which I never had the time to do before. This includes data on unemployment, emerging problems in this area and problems brought on by COVID 19, staff demands in the labour market, new programs for which there is a demand in the labour market, etc... All of which is available online.
COVID 19 has significantly influenced global trends in both everyday life and work, changing our awareness of our personal priorities in a short space of time.
Countries whose education systems have proven themselves to be robust in a very short space of time have proven their collective maturity and stopped the general spread of the pandemic. Media and digital literacy have become imperative! Covid-19 has led to a sharp rise in unemployment, weakened the economy of many countries, and led to social destabilisation. Therefore, I focused my professional work on searching for sources that will mitigate the aforementioned consequences. The concept of lifelong learning thus became the basis of national educational policy and gained its functional character. Adult education has become a condicio sine qua non! It has also been a chance for me to be actively involved in the work of the non-governmental organisation, whose mission it is to develop human resources. We have created a website that is linked to the EPALE platform, as an important source of information in many areas.
Our society is still not mature enough to communicate actively through platforms, nor to self-educate using online tools. We find it difficult to apply the concept of searching for information and knowledge by participating in online events and conferences. Nor are we inclined to promote ourselves through other platforms. The time that COVID 19 has “given” us, stopping us from moving around the planet, is time we have had to use in preparing for a new era. It is indisputable that we are becoming digital beings, whether we want to admit it or not. I have started to spread my knowledge and mission through active trainings based on a new concept of knowledge and learning.
EPALE is a significant resource for anyone who wants to keep up with all the inevitable changes to our ways of thinking, approach to the real environment, and anticipation of change.
I firmly believe that I have used this time in the right way, and that the new knowledge I have acquired will have a positive impact on my future work.
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