The use of European funds by the Osijek School of Tourism

Osijek is a beautiful city in mainland Croatia located along the right bank of the Drava River with a population of 108. It is a student city with many universities, a green city with many parks and beautiful architecture. It is considered a city of movement due to the large number of bikes and runners you encounter on its streets. The city has a relaxed air, the population is welcoming and cheerful. In the four corners of the city, you meet young people, families with children, satisfied people who live their lives to the full.

In this beautiful city, the VET4Change project continues with a new transnational meeting. It took place on September 1 and 2 in Osijek, Croatia. The objectives of the meeting were to disseminate the achievements and practices of VET4Change within the “Land Without Borders” Festival, the place of the education system and vocational training in the vision of the future and understand the prospects for vocational training in rural areas.

THEAssociation Breza to formalize a meeting at the headquarters of the county council of Osijek-Baranya where we were welcomed by Ms. Miranda Glavaš Kul, head of the department of education and youth. The institution is organized into 14 departments, it finances more than 74 schools in the region and ensures that they have all the necessary facilities to operate at full capacity and produce excellent results.

In Croatia, the trend is that most students attend vocational schools: more than 70% students. Croatian students want to acquire practical skills because it helps them to develop and enter the labor market more easily.

Osijek School of Tourism. Miranda and the director of this school, introduced us to the world of the best cooking school in the whole country. The school has more than 600 students who follow the specializations of cook, pastry chef, bartender-waiter, tourism and services. They accessed European funds amounting to 11 million euros to modernize the equipment used in the school, the constructions, the courses of excellence and to produce a change in the method of teaching subjects and textbooks. An interesting example in this regard is the presence of a mirror in the bartender-waiter workshop so that students can observe their body language and attitude, in order to rise to the highest standards. The school has several workshops equipped with specific equipment for each specialty. They have the best equipment in the country, for young people it is a real pleasure to learn using the latest technology.

The school also organizes cooking classes and workshops. VIRTUOS (Virtuos+Osijek), a project through which cooking classes are organized with students and adults who wish to specialize in a certain cooking technique or wish to retrain professionally. In the workshops, they use screens through which they broadcast live instruction from chefs across the country or the world. This is revolutionary for specialized high schools.

The school has a boarding school for pupils from other localities, which they transform into a hotel during the holidays, thus increasing their income. Within the school, they also produce their own beer which they use for national and international fairs and exhibitions in which they participate. They also want to buy a mobile trailer in which they can cook during these events.

Also within the institution there is a psychological office, an IT office, a sports arena, a career guidance office and a career center, the place where students are guided to discover their passions, improve their skills , learn how to present yourself to be able to have a successful career after completing their studies. We show them the opportunities that exist in the job market and we help them reach the best employers in their field.

The institution's motto "Be yourself!" ". This is an example of good practice that all vocational schools in Europe could follow.

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