The European Union aims to create a railway area within the framework of Technical Specifications for Interoperability (TSI) of the national railway systems. In this context; The process of technical harmonization of European railways in the European Union member countries has been initiated and is ongoing. In the strategic plan of the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure of Turkish Republic in 2023, a vision and a target have been adopted for the investments to continue in a way to support the railway sector. The railway sector, which has been developing and liberalizing in line with this strategic goal, has enabled important railway investments to be implemented and new technologies, new insights and new railway professions to take part in the employment process. The inclusion of High Speed Train (HST) technology and management approach in the Turkish Railway network is a result in this sense. The main goal of our project is to certify the knowledge, skills and competencies of technical staff who will work in the maintenance and repair processes of High Speed Train (HST) sets (due to the technological differences of these sets from conventional railway vehicles) on the basis of quality assurance.
In addition, our project covers the subjects of realizing lifelong learning and mobility, increasing the quality and efficiency of education and training, promoting creativity, innovation and employability, which takes place in the targets of European Union 2020 The main, concrete outputs and other goals we want to achieve in our project are listed below.
- Defining the profession of HST Set Maintenance,
- Preparation of the national standard of the HST Set Maintenance profession and its publication in the Official Newspaper as legislation,
- Preparation of the national competence of the HST Set Maintenance profession and its publication by MYK,
- Preparation of the certification program of the HST Set Maintenance profession in accordance with the TS EN ISO / IEC 17024 quality standard principles,
- Authorization of Eskişehir Demiryolu Eğitim ve Sınav Merkezi (EDESM) within the scope of the High Speed Train Set Maintenance profession by TÜRKAK and MYK,
- Development of guidance and preparation mobile application for MYK certificate exam,
Conducting MYK Certificate pilot exam for candidates by EDESM,
- Candidates who are entitled to receive the MYK Certificate to be given the Europass certificate annex.
The strategic goals published by the Presidency and the sector institutions, along with the results of the survey we applied to the target groups (approximately 160 people), are the basis of our needs analysis that reinforces the rationale of our goals. Our detailed needs analysis in which the survey results and strategic targets are interpreted is included in the annex of the project. If we give an example from the results section of our needs analysis; 78.5% of the participants state that HST Set Maintainers job description is not clear. About 89% think that professional standard and competence of HST Set Maintenance profession should be published by MYK. Alongside this, the 11th Development Plan of the Presidency includes the main objective of “Maintenance and repair activities for railway infrastructure and railway vehicles will be improved, and a management system based on the concept of preventive maintenance will be established”.
The main target group of our project is individuals who work as HST Set Maintainers in the rail systems sector whose profession have not been formally defined or certified. As of today, the number of these employees is around 200 people. In line with our government’s 2023 vision, as required by the High Speed Train policies; It is clear that this number will increase when looking at the ongoing projects (Kapıkule-Istanbul, Ankara-Sivas, Bilecik-Bursa, Ankara-Izmir) and the feasibility / planned projects (Konya-Antalya, Sivas-Kars, Kayseri Antalya). At the same time, the potential of approximately 2000 people each year who will graduate from rail systems technology departments in high schools and vocational schools, reveals the future projection of this profession. Organizations that will employ these individuals, managers of these organizations, educators and non-governmental organizations are directly and indirectly in the target group.
Trex Gbr, which is one of the partners of our project, is Siemens’ business partner in the field of training of railway professionals. Some of our HST sets are manufactured by Siemens. Trex Gbr company, serves the driving and maintenance training in Turkey related to HST sets. UKCKA(which is also a partner) is an authorized certification body that performs certification activities.
This project plans to work towards a railway profession that the standard and training processes of which is not defined in our country. Since we are a country that does not produce but use High Speed train technology, transnational cooperation is imperative.