A new group of turkish students goes to Russia as part of the Akkuyu NPP project

September 3, 2021 – Ankara, Turkey. – A group of students who will join the targeted program of personnel training for Akkuyu NPP this autumn participated in a meeting at the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources of the Republic of Turkey, which was also attended by representatives of AKKUYU NUKLEAR JSC, before leaving for Russia. Twenty-four bachelor's degree graduates from various Turkish universities selected based on the results of entrance examinations will go to Russia to study for a master's degree at Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU) in Thermal Power Engineering and Heat Engineering and Electric Power Engineering and Electrical Engineering.

Salih Sarı, Head of Nuclear Infrastructure Development Department at the Turkish Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, addressed the SPbPU master's students at the meeting: "Akkuyu NPP is a strategic Project for Turkey in many aspects. Nuclear generation, as well as other base-load power plants, make an important contribution to improving the reliability of energy supply. Furthermore The NPP will largely reduce our dependence on imported natural gas. Moreover, the NPP is one of the few options of electricity generation that do not discharge greenhouse gas into the atmosphere. The main task of the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, other relevant public institutions and organizations is to ensure that the NPP will be handed over to you, the future specialists of the operating staff, who will ensure a reliable and safe operation of the plant for at least 60 years. From this point of view, your training in Russia is essential for the Project in terms of acquiring the necessary knowledge and skills as well as a strong nuclear safety culture."

Turkish students, who will start their studies in the master's program in the beginning of  September, were also welcomed by a representative of AKKUYU NUKLEAR JSC, Ahmet Çelik, Director for Interaction with the Regulator, who was present at the meeting: "AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC and the Ministry of Energy of Turkey are focusing on the training of qualified personnel for the Project. Nuclear power is a completely new industry for Turkey. Although Turkish universities train nuclear power engineers, in the absence of operating nuclear power plants it is essential that future Akkuyu NPP specialists receive specialized education in Russia and complete internships at operating nuclear power plants. Currently, intensive construction and installation work is in progress at the three power units of the future NPP, and an active preparation for construction is underway at the fourth unit."

The meeting in the Ministry was also attended by representatives of AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC HR, who answered in detail all questions of students about the program conditions and employment in the company upon graduation, including the criteria for full-time vacancy assignment in the company and career opportunities.

The students participating in the program will spend two years studying at SPbPU, which is one of the best technical universities in Russia. Major subjects will be taught in English, and students will have an opportunity to attend classes in Russian in addition to the core curriculum. According to the program conditions, once a year students will be compensated a round-trip air ticket from Istanbul to St. Petersburg and back; the students will be able to live in the campus and use medical insurance; they will be paid a scholarship of about 3600 Turkish Liras. Upon receiving their diplomas, SPbPU master's degree graduates will be employed by AKKUYU NUKLEAR JSC.

About training of Turkish specialists for Akkuyu NPP

The target-oriented personnel training program for Akkuyu NPP is being implemented within the framework of the "Intergovernmental Agreement between the Government of the Russian Federation and the Government of the Republic of Turkey on Cooperation in the field of construction and operation of the nuclear power plant at the Akkuyu NPP site in the Republic of Turkey" to train specialists among the citizens of the Republic of Turkey, followed by their employment in AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC. AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC initiated the education program in 2011. The training costs are borne by the Russian side.

The training takes place at the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI (NRNU MEPhI) and Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University (SPbPU). In 2011, the first Turkish students began their training at Russian universities under the specialist's degree program of "Nuclear plants: design, operation and engineering".

A total of 186 Turkish young professionals (35 graduates in 2018, 53 in 2019, 55 in 2020, and 43 in 2021) have already completed the targeted personnel training program for Akkuyu NPP, have been hired by AKKUYU NUCLEAR JSC and are successfully working for the construction project of Turkey's first nuclear power plant. 85 Turkish students, including 36 at MEPhI and 49 at SPbPU are now studying under the program. Another 24 bachelor's degree graduates from the Turkish universities selected this year to study in the master's program at SPbPU will begin their studies in autumn 2021.

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