Detjon Qoqaj is a 21-year-old from Prizren in Kosovo, and he is one of many young people who in recent years have seen information technology as an attractive sector for their professional life. The decision to embark on a professional journey in ICT was not a technical one for Detjon: it started as a passion when he was only 10 years old. It was then that Detjon had his first experience with a computer through a friend who owned one. “It was a field where you could explore new information endlessly: it was love at first sight,” he says. This first experience with a computer made him beg his parents to buy him a computer. They did so, and an exciting journey began for Detjon.
Detjon developed his ICT and digital skills further, and when the time came for university studies, he had no doubt about the subject that he would study. He started his studies in 2020 but was eager to learn more and faster. Consequently, he started looking for additional options and possibilities for increasing his skills and he came across an announcement of an EU-funded project that was offering courses on ICT skills free of charge for young people from Kosovo. “Even though the university that I go to is quite up to date, they still can’t keep up fully with the fast developments in ICT. Professional courses are always a good option for filling this gap,” says Detjon.
The EU’s Support for the Competitiveness of Kosovo’s ICT Sector project was focused on providing training on ICT, digital skills and business management, including web development, Java programming, cybersecurity, Python, big data, machine learning, IT project management and soft skills. In addition, the project has provided business training courses on management and leadership in the ICT sector. Detjon participated in two of the course modules: Java and Android development and web development.
As a result of his hard work, knowledge gained in his university studies, and particularly the knowledge gained at the courses funded by the EU project, Detjon got a job with Bottomline Technologies, a company that operates in more than 90 countries around the world. “The knowledge gained from the course helped me a lot. For example, there were some technical questions at my job interview that I learned the answers to on the course, that had an impact on my success at the interview,” he says.
Detjon has big ambitions for his future in the ICT and digital sector. “In the future I see myself as a product owner and a CEO of an important ICT company that employs and creates positive perspectives for other young people,” he says.
About the project
The EU’s Support for the Competitiveness of Kosovo’s ICT Sector project, branded as “ICT for Kosovo’s Growth”, aims to enhance the competitiveness of Kosovo’s digital and traditional businesses by supporting the expansion of Kosovo’s ICT sector, leading to new job creation. Moreover, the project intends to bridge the digital and business skills gap in a sustainable manner that meets the needs of the market, and increases Kosovan ICT businesses’ export as well as building the competitiveness of Kosovo’s digital and traditional businesses through the use of ICT.
The project is managed by the European Union Office in Kosovo and implemented by WeGlobal in partnership with European Projects Management Ltd and Prishtina REA. It lasts for 42 months, from January 2020 until July 2023.
Photo credits: ICT for Kosovo’s Growth
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