Monday, 18 January 2021

Croatian Female Postgraduate Students Outnumber Men 2:1

January 18, 2021 – Newly released figures examining further education demographics show that Croatian female postgraduate students account for a huge 66.3 percent of all those enrolled at this level in the country

Nobody is really sure for just how long women have lived in an imbalanced society. The patriarchal system stretches back thousands of years, favouring male authority and male heirs. It is only within the relatively recent past that we have rightly begun to question the social, legal, political, religious, and economic restraints placed upon women. Key to their continuing emancipation has been equal opportunities in education.

In Croatia, where some consider the patriarchal system to have stubbornly lingered for longer than in other parts of Europe, evidence of society's continuing shift can be seen in the latest figures for higher education. According to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), within the field of specialist studies in the academic year 2019/2020, Croatian female postgraduate students outnumber their male counterparts at almost 2:1.

Of 1429 students who enrolled in specialist continuing studies for the year 2000, some 948 of them were Croatian female postgraduate students. Croatian female postgraduate students account for 66.3 percent of all students enrolled at this level in the country, with their male counterparts accounting for just 33.7 percent.

Social sciences (cultural and social anthropology, sociology, psychology, political science, and economics) accounted for the largest area in which Croatian female postgraduate students chose to study, accounting for 43.7 percent of female enrolments. The next most popular areas of study for Croatian female postgraduate students were biomedicine and health (42.8 percent), followed by technical sciences (5.7 percent), interdisciplinary fields of science (4.5 percent) then natural sciences (1.1 percent). Less than one percent of Croatian female postgraduate students enrolled in the humanities (0.9 percent), biotechnical sciences (0.7 percent) and the arts (0.6 percent).

architectpartfiinny.jpg

Most postgraduate specialist students enrolled at the University of Zagreb (79.3 percent), followed by the University of Rijeka (10.5 percent), the University of Osijek (6.9 percent), the University of Split (2.5 percent), and Libertas International University Zagreb (0.8 percent).

Croatian female postgraduate students accounted for 81.8 percent of enrolments for this level of study at Libertas International University Zagreb, 77.8 percent at the University of Split, 68 percent at the University of Zagreb, 62.2 percent at the University of Osijek, and 52.6 percent at the University of Rijeka.

unizgggg.jpgThe University of Zagreb © University of Zagreb

Most students enrolling for studies at the postgraduate level were aged 30 to 34 years (36.1 percent), with 24.8 percent being in the 25 to 29 age group. 19 percent were in the 35 to 39 age group, 9.9 percent in the 40 to 44 age group, 5.7 percent in the 45 to 49 age group, 2.4 percent in the 50 to 54 age group, 1.1 percent in the 55+ age group and 1 percent were aged 24-years-old.

98.3 percent of all postgraduate students enrolled at universities in Croatia are citizens of the Republic of Croatia. Foreigners choosing to undertake their postgraduate studies at universities in Croatia accounted for just 1.7 percent of enrolments. Of the Croatian citizens, 97 percent had previously graduated in the Republic of Croatia, and 3 percent abroad.

97 percent of all postgraduate students are already employed and 3 percent unemployed. 42.8 percent are employed in the field of healthcare and social care. Employers paid for the greatest share of postgraduate course fees - 55.8 percent of postgraduate students had their course fees paid for by their employer. 43.7 percent of students paid for their own study fees.

Saturday, 9 January 2021

All Full-Time Osijek and Baranja Students Get Free Train Travel

January 9, 2021 – From this year, full-time Osijek and Baranja students can get free train travel any time throughout their own county and for travel to educational centres anywhere in Croatia, in a new deal struck by the county and the national train operator

Once a sea bed, the vast flatlands of Slavonia are perfect for farming. At one time, this area was the breadbasket for much of Yugoslavia. It really wasn't so long ago that many folks left dry and dusty Dalmatia in search of employment and new lives on this fertile ground. Now, it's the other way round - Slavonian youth travel to the coast each summer in search of seasonal work. Others move to Ireland, Germany, Austria. Slavonia is losing many skilled younger people at an alarming rate. Increased mechanisation has reduced the need for labour in the area's agriculture. And, besides, most Slavonian youths are these days educated to a degree where their ambitions are greater than joining local agricultural endeavours.

In an area with limited possibilities, limited opportunities, education lies at the heart of survival in Slavonia. Local authorities know this and try to facilitate education as best they can. It is to that end that those in the Slavonian county of Osijek and Baranja have struck a deal with Croatia's national train operator to offer free train travel to all full-time Osijek and Baranja students.

Agreed upon at the end of last year, the scheme was implemented on 1 January 2021. Osijek and Baranja County has agreed to co-finance journeys for full-time Osijek and Baranja students who study not only within the county itself but across the whole of Croatia.

Slavonija_OsijekTrainstation.jpgOsijek train station © Romulić & Stojčić

Monthly tickets for travel within the county already held a discount of up to 65 percent given to full-time students by the train operator, depending on the route. The County has now agreed to pay the remainder of the monthly ticket for all full-time Osijek and Baranja students. To meet the requirements of this deal, the departing and destination stations must both be in Osijek-Baranja County. The free monthly ticket allows an unlimited number of trips on the route, meaning that Osijek and Baranja students can also use the train for free on recreational journeys within the county.

The second deal sees the County co-finance 50% of journey costs for full-time Osijek and Baranja students who study elsewhere in Croatia, with the train operator HŽ agreeing to grant a discount to cover the other 50 %.

In order to obtain a free (monthly or individual) ticket, it is necessary to first obtain a certificate from their Administrative Department for the Economy. To get the certificate, Osijek and Baranja students must submit a copy of their identity card, a certificate of full-time study and two completed application forms (these can be found on the county's website www.obz.hr). Requests can be made in person or by mail (Osijek-Baranja County, Administrative Department for Economy, Županijska 4, Osijek or on the e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Free tickets can thereafter be bought by Osijek and Baranja students at the box office, prior to travel, or on the train itself, upon producing the relevant and needed documentation.

Thursday, 10 September 2020

Croatia Will Get a New University, It Will Be Named After Tudjman

September 10, 2020 - As reported by Index.hr, in the first parliamentary reading, the Government said that Croatia would get a new university, the University of Defense and Security 'Dr. Franjo Tudjman', to perform activities of higher education, scientific, professional, and other activities for the needs of the defense system and the homeland security system.

According to the bill, which was sent to the Parliament from the Government session on Thursday, the Croatian Military Academy 'Dr. Franjo Tudjman' becomes a University to which already established study programs and accredited university studies in Zagreb and Split will be transferred, will conduct a postgraduate university specialist study of homeland security, and the Ministry of Defense will perform the rights and duties of the founders.

Minister of Defense Mario Banožić pointed out that the transformation to a university 'Dr. Franjo Tudjman' is of special state interest, and the law provides key conditions for the development of the Croatian Army's capabilities and military skills as a science.

'The University will enable the development of scientific and teaching staff for the interdisciplinary field of science in the field of military-defense and security-intelligence sciences and skills, and will be able to apply for EU funds, which has not been possible so far' he stressed.

We must strive for the highest quality education system and thus contribute to the development of the Croatian Army by creating a staff that will gain all the necessary breadth for quality leadership and management to execute tasks, the minister added.

'The university will enable a stronger affirmation of the Croatian Army on the international scene,' he pointed out.

The university will be organized like other public universities in Croatia. It will also have certain specifics, and the law in the field of defense will be applied to it while respecting the constitutional provision on university autonomy.

Poor placement of Croatian universities in the world

Croatian universities are not doing well in the world rankings.

Times Higher Education published a ranking of the best universities for 2021, according to which the University of Oxford is again the best in the world, while the University of Split is in the 801-1000 position and the University of Zagreb in the 1001+ position.

The ranking includes more than 1,500 universities from 93 countries, the highest so far. The list is based on 13 performance indicators in four areas: teaching, research, knowledge transfer, and an international perspective.

Compared to the list for 2020, the University of Split has fallen on the list. At that time, it had a position of 601–800, and now it is in the position of 801–1000. Nevertheless, the University of Split is the best positioned Croatian university. The University of Zagreb remained in the same position, below the top 1,000.

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Monday, 15 April 2019

Mate Rimac Employs First Deaf Person to Graduate from FER

Statistics show that about 12,000 deaf people live in the Republic of Croatia, but unfortunately it is rare for them to complete their higher education.

As Ivan Tominac/Poslovni Dnevnik writes on the 14th of April, 2019, Josip Ivanković was born in Čapljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina, but just one year after his birth, he was declared deaf, and this fact was one of his reasons for his relocation to Croatia. His move to Croatia certainly paid off as being the right move, and Josip, despite the diagnosis, managed to develop his speech and the technique of listening. That was, as Josip himself states, a painstaking and long process.

"The situation is that I have to treat speaking Croatian as if I was speaking a foreign language," Josip Ivanković explained.

For four years now, his speech and listening abilities have been being developed at the SUVAG Polyclinic, where Josip learned to speak with vibration, tone amplification, visualisation and by learning anatomy.

"When I learned to pronounce the letter ''r'', I had to touch the vocal chords of the logopad to feel a certain vibration and titration, then I'd lean my hand on my neck to feel the same vibration, so I learned to pronounce the letter ''r'' I learned to pronounce ''ž'' in a similar way, I just put my hand on my head. Generally speaking, the hardest letters to pronounce for the deaf are l,č,ć,đ,dž,lj and nj, and the reason for that is that such letters can't be visually identified. They're explained through the anatomy of the oral cavity, just like a doctor explains the heart's organs, or where the blood enters and where it exits,'' explained Josip.

After the kindergarten era ended, in which he learned the basics of socialisation, it was decided that he should attend a regular school.

This period of schooling, without any curriculum adjustment, he adds, was defined by perseverance, and communicational misunderstandings are, in his words, quite normal and natural.

"The professors made me equal with my peers, and this proved to be a good thing because I learned so much about the world of those who can hear, and I learned how to gather information," said Josip. As stated, statistics show that about 12,000 deaf people live in Croatia, but it is rare for them to complete higher education. Josip was not one of them, and he completed a college which has some very demanding academic requirements for its students.

He enrolled at FER (University of Zagreb, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computing), and the likelihood of him completing his studies was slim, yet Josip had different plans for himself.

"At the beginning of the semester, it was very difficult for me to adapt,'' recalled Josip. Before Josip's arrival, professors from Zagreb's FER didn't have any experience in working with people with impaired hearing. At the beginning, he failed several exams, but he didn't let that dampen his spirit, and later he turned to further consultations.

This combination led him to become the very first deaf person to graduated from that college.

"The professors were very approachable, and our relationship was very flexible and adaptable. I will never forget how Professor Brnetić, instead of me asking him, personally invited me to consultations during the holidays and showed me much he cared that I didn't miss anything from the lecture. On the other hand, one professor asked me during consultations why I didn't go to the lectures and asked me how I was learning. I told him that I don't go to the lectures because I can't hear them. I took out a 100-page notebook with my assignments, and the professor was surprised that I did all that without having gone to any lectures. He asked me to lend him that notebook and later I learned that he'd showed my notebook to all of the professors. Believe it or not, a year after when I came to his office, that copy of the notebook was still on his desk,'' Josip stated, recalling his faculty days.

In the end, none of the obstacles he faced along the way turned him away from his goal, and he passed 62 engagements that mostly relied solely on him and his level of dedication. This FER student didn't have to wait around long before a job opportunity came knocking, and it wasn't your regular offer. He started his working life at no less than Rimac Automobili as an Embedded Hardware Engineer. Rimac had no problems with his deafness and offered him a position after his interview.

''At the beginning of the job, I was given a pretty demanding project that I had to complete within a month, which was the length of my trial period, and when the project ended I realised that I was able to complete it and was given the green light to remain with the firm,'' Josip said. The work never stops at Rimac Automobili, and at the moment, Josip is working on a project for the development of electric car chargers.

"Communication skills are the most difficult for me, because I have to invest extra energy into lip reading and that's mentally challenging and difficult. Imagine a situation in which a colleague is referring to professional terms, and I need to decode them with and put them into context in order for me to have any understanding. Imagine switching off your ears, and focusing your eyes on their lips alone.

You aren't likely to understand because they're not using standard words, they're using technical phrases that are difficult to decode and recognise. At the beginning, it was very difficult for me to follow verbal communication and understand the complexity of the project. Of course, since working here I've changed a lot and become much more calm, more focused and concentrated on the small things. The worst thing is when a colleague does not know how to communicate with me properly, and this is where I'm concerned about information which is valuable to the project, and that's an extra effort. Each colleague has his own specific way of speaking and they aren't all the same in communication. With time, I somehow adjusted to them, and they also had to adapt to me, I accepted that this was all normal and there would always be a situation where they couldn't understand, but I'll always ask them to repeat themselves not just twice, but 1000 times!'' concluded Josip.

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Click here for the original article by Ivan Tominac for Poslovni Dnevnik

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