Rubik, North Albania


A quantum leap!

The vocational school in Rubik is important for the whole of north Albania, but so far it has not been able to provide any practical training. This has now been changed radically.


"Our students are walking away, what else can I say?" The words of the teacher whose job it is to train plumbing and heating engineers were unmistakably clear. In mid September 2019, 18 youngsters had started their training course. But when at the beginning of October IPA representatives visited the school, the class had already been suspended. 13 students had simply given up. The same had happened to the course in mechanics, although a vocational education offers good prospects in Albania, and vocational schools are extremely rare. Rubik even has a boarding school. Young adults from all over northern Albania came here and left again when they saw the classrooms where practical skills are taught. There was virtually nothingpractical that could help them learn their trade. "We receive a total of 800 Euros per year to pay for urgent repairs and new acquisitions", the mechanics teacher said. This was obvious! The equipment and tools were no more than a scrap heap, but thetwo female teachers had not given up dreaming yet. When they were asked what they needed and wanted, they both came up with a detailed project specification. Drawings of training simulations, wish lists and plans, everything was already prepared. The guests from Switzerland were deeply impressed by the commitment and the diligence with which everything had been prepared.

Speechless teachers


Today nothing is as it used to be, but the path to the end result began with a small and unusual difference. Normally the beneficiaries come up with the biggest possible project when they see a chance of being supported. But this case was different. Our invitation to present us with a budget for one of the courses was answered with a modest list. "This is not what we are used to", we said to each other at the IPA office. Thanks to a very generous, private donation all the wishes for both courses were fulfilled. The two teachers were blissfully happy. They were now allowed to make enquiries about the equipment they needed, about prices, and finally complete their budgets. Despite the enormous difficulties and the problems connected with the importing of specific tools caused by the corona pandemic, the two rooms were completely and adequately equipped. "The teachers are speechless", IPA partner Suela Koçibellinj wrote. After so many years full of frustrations their dreams have at long last come true. The newly gained motivation was noticeable. "We will begin to advertise immediately. The new practical options will undoubtedly encourage many youngsters to study here." Even before the summer holiday was over, there was a first success. An agreement with the supplier of the equipment to offer the future students of both courses the possibility to do practical work in various companies. The new academic year started on September 14 – and a new era for the vocational school in Rubik.

New practical training in two courses