TALLINN - The Estonian Entrepreneurship University of Applied Sciences (EUAS) and the city of Uda in Japan signed an agreement on Thursday, as a result of which EUAS will launch a robotics curriculum in English at Clevon Academy in Viljandi and an office of EUAS will open in Japan.
The new curriculum is expected to welcome 20 students from Japan next year. In addition, in cooperation with the city of Uda, an office of EUAS is to be opened in Japan in order to accommodate more robotics enthusiasts, EUAS said in a press release.
"Learning will take place as usual -- it's just that in the classrooms and in the labs it will be English instead of Estonian. We will start with smaller hobby electronics programming and end with developing a real self-driving vehicle," said Laido Valdvee, coordinator of the Viljandi-based Clevon Academy.
Andrus Pedai, rector of EUAS, described international cooperation as one of the key accelerators of economic growth in Estonia.
"Clevon is a successful example of how to bring foreign talent to Estonia and export our advanced education of the future to the world," Pedai said. "I am very pleased that, together with the city of Uda, we can start offering robotics formal education also in Japan."
The mayor of Uda, Kazutoshi Kongo, said the collaboration is more than just introducing a new curriculum or opening a school.
"Bringing Clevon Academy to our city is not only an investment in education, it is an investment in the future. Through this, our young people will gain the necessary experiences and knowledge to contribute to society and carry it forward," said the mayor.
Mayumi Ina, co-founder of Next Innovation, a company coordinating Estonia-Japan relations and a driving force behind the venture, sees significant potential in the project.
"During my 10 years in Estonia, I have witnessed the forward-looking startup and education landscape this country has. I believe that Japan has a lot to learn from Estonia and Clevon, and I hope that this collaboration will serve as the foundation for strengthening relations between the two countries and shaping a broader future," Mayumi Ina said.
Clevon Academy, a product of collaboration between the EUAS and Clevon, offers professional higher education studies in Viljandi in the field of robotics software development. In this unique work-based study program, students are supported by lecturers from the EUAS, sectoral experts and top specialists from Clevon. Graduates receive a bachelor's degree.