The ERASMUS-EDU-2022-CBHE-STRAND-2 project, INMACOM, held its kick-off meeting from March 9th to March 11th, 2023, at Samarkand State University in Uzbekistan. This meeting marked the beginning of a collaborative effort to enhance the field of optical communication in Uzbekistan through innovative teaching methods and cooperation between universities.
The event commenced with the arrival of participants on Wednesday, March 8th, followed by a full day of engaging activities on Thursday, March 9th. The meeting began with a registration period, leading to welcome speeches delivered by esteemed guests including Rustam Kholmuradov, the Rector of Samarkand State University, Ulugbek Khodiev, Head of the Department of MHSSE, Aziza Abduraxmanova, Coordinator of NEO-Uzbekistan, and Ahmed Yusupov from TUIT.
Representatives from participating institutions, namely the National University of Uzbekistan, Samarkand State University, Tashkent University of Information Technologies, and Urgench Branch of TUIT, provided descriptions of their respective roles and contributions to the project, fostering a better understanding of each institution`s expertise and involvement. Distinguished guest speakers, including Andrea Carena from Politecnico di Torino, Nicolas Le Thomas from Ghent University, and Heidi Ottevaere from Vrije University, delivered informative presentations, sharing their experiences and insights in the field of optical communication. Ahmed Yusupov from TUIT presented an overview of the INMACOM Project, highlighting its objectives, activities for the first year, and plans for implementation. This comprehensive presentation laid the foundation for productive discussions among the participants. The meeting provided a platform for in-depth discussions on the project plan implementation, activities, and expected results. Ahmed Yusupov facilitated these discussions, ensuring that all participants had an opportunity to contribute their perspectives and insights.
On Friday, March 10th, the INMACOM project member board was formed, consisting of individuals responsible for project management, quality control, dissemination, and reporting. Ahmed Yusupov and Khabibullo Nosirov will lead this dedicated team, ensuring effective coordination and execution of project activities. The meeting also focused on reviewing existing curricula at Uzbekistani universities and planning for curriculum development within the INMACOM project. Academics from the participating universities collaborated to enhance the curricula and align them with the project`s objectives. Additionally, the procurement and installation of equipment for INMACOM labs were discussed, with a focus on establishing state-of-the-art facilities for practical training and research. The meeting concluded with a summary session, during which the working protocol for project implementation was discussed and adopted. Plans were also made for the next project meeting, ensuring the continuity and progress of the INMACOM project.
On Saturday, March 11th, witnessed the opening of the INMACOM Workshop, followed by informative presentations on the optical communication needs and challenges faced by specialists in Uzbekistan. Methodologies for curriculum development and the establishment of state standards for the Master`s program were also discussed. European recommendations on the Bologna process, including the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS), were shared, highlighting best practices in higher education. Participants then engaged in working groups focused on project management, quality control, public relations, and curriculum development. These groups fostered collaboration and laid the groundwork for successful project implementation.