Despite the war and the occupation of Mariupol, the first non-state-owned metals and mining university in Ukraine, Metinvest Polytechnic, has completed its intake of students for all bachelor's and master's degree programmes, the first class in its history. On 19 September, more than 350 students began their studies in modern engineering and technical programmes.
Metinvest Group intended to open a university with a unique campus in a new, ultramodern building in Mariupol, which would have been on par with the best technical universities in the world. However, construction was stopped as a result of the war and the temporary occupation of the city. Despite these many obstacles, the Group’s management took the decision to maintain the university, to keep the dream of the "Polytechnic of the Future" alive and to give students an opportunity to receive a European-level education in Ukraine.
The Group has launched combined online and offline training at Metinvest Polytechnic, while abiding by all safety measures for students and teachers alike.
Rinat Akhmetov, shareholder of Metinvest Group:
“We need Ukraine’s victory on all fronts. We must contribute to this goal on a daily basis in every way possible. To secure victory in the economy, Ukraine needs the highly skilled specialists who will rebuild our homeland. Such specialists will be nurtured by Metinvest Polytechnic. I believe that the university will become a centre for uniting people who care about the fate of Mariupol and Ukraine. After our victory, we will come back to Mariupol by all available means and complete the construction of the state-of-the-art building for this most modern university."
Activities the university has undertaken since the outbreak of the war
The university has managed to retain almost all of its teaching staff. During the early months of the full-scale invasion, the university not only continued its preparations for licensed education programmes for bachelor’s and master’s students, but also resumed its training courses in seven areas for Metinvest employees seeking to upgrade their skills and qualifications.
Furthermore, Metinvest Polytechnic has developed new education programmes that will encompass several specialised areas and that will make it possible to train lead engineers with multiple competencies to implement projects aimed at restoring and rebuilding Ukraine's industry and urban infrastructure in general.
More than 150 students have enrolled in the bachelor’s degree programmes at the first and the second year course level, and almost 200 people will receive master's degrees. Metallurgy, computer science, automation, computer integration technologies and occupational safety were the subjects of the most interest to the first-year students. The most popular master's degree programmes include computer science and digital intelligence, occupational safety audit and consulting, steel metallurgy and intelligent control systems for the metals and mining sector.
Those admitted to Metinvest Polytechnic include graduates of colleges and lyceums, employees of Metinvest enterprises from Zaporizhzhia, Pokrovske, Kamianske and Kryvyi Rih, as well as residents of the cities of Mariupol and Avdiivka who left their homes because of the war.
President of Metinvest Polytechnic Oleksandr Povazhny:
"For any university, the first intake of students, even in peaceful times, is never an easy task. And when applicants are in a state of uncertainty and stress because of the war, it is an extremely difficult task. However, thanks to our professional team, strong support from Metinvest Group and a desire to provide Ukrainians with the opportunity to obtain a modern engineering and technical education, the first enrolment for all bachelor's and master's degree programmes at Metinvest Polytechnic has been completed. This proves better than even a million words that people believe in Metinvest Polytechnic, their professional future and the future of Ukraine as a whole."
Currently, students will study remotely under the dual education system, combining theory and practice at Metinvest Group's enterprises.
The education programmes are focused, to the greatest extent possible, on maintaining a high level of practical training under conditions where online classes account for a good part of the time due to the difficult security situation. In particular, practice, calculation work, and laboratory work will be carried out on subject and materials involved in real production processes. Students will perform the tasks that they will come across in their future professional lives. Employees of Metinvest enterprises, practitioners and international and local experts will be involved in the education process.
The best students will receive scholarships upon the completion of the first semester. In addition, Metinvest Group management will award personal scholarships to those who participate in educational and scientific projects, work on operational improvements and receive high honours for their studies in their chosen specialty.
Yuriy Ryzhenkov, CEO of Metinvest Group:
"The start of the learning process at Metinvest Polytechnic proves, first of all, that we stick to our plans despite all of the challenges of the time. The number of people willing to obtain modern engineering and technical professional qualifications gives one faith that Ukrainian industry will soon have access to highly qualified experts. It also demonstrates our commitment to rebuild plants and cities and make Ukraine a centre for state-of-the-art engineering technologies, where everyone who wants to learn, create and succeed has a future."
In the short term, the university plans to join CDIO, an international initiative for the development of engineering education, which teaches how to work according to the principles of Conceive, Design, Implement and Operate.
Researchers and experts from Akademia Górniczo-Hutnicza im Stanisława Staszica w Krakowie (Poland) and Montanuniversität Leoben, К1-Меt (Austria) have already been involved in the implementation of education programmes. The next step is to establish partnerships in education and science with specialised universities in Europe, the US and Southeast Asia.
Metinvest Polytechnic is a university of the future that provides new opportunities for young people. The university was founded by Metinvest Group in June 2020. The main goal of the project is to create a European-level higher education system in Ukraine. People who have chosen technical specialties that are in demand in the labour market will be able to study at the university. Metinvest Group guarantees a first job, financial and other incentives to the best students.