NESTet 2008: Education and training will drive and sustain
the nuclear industry.
by Helin Sanna, Finnish Young Generation
The NESTet 2008 conference dedicated to the
issue of education and training in the nuclear field took place
from 4 - 8 May 2008 in Budapest, Hungary. NESTet 2008 was the
first ever specialist event of its kind to be organised. In spite
of the fact that it was an inaugural event 130 participants attended
from 29 countries, making it an incredible success.
The main theme discussed during NESTet 2008
was one of the major challenges that the nuclear business is
facing today, namely how to preserve nuclear knowledge and to
transfer it to subsequent generations. This challenge is all
the more relevant today as the world is experiencing a nuclear
renaissance, with several new nuclear power plants being built
and others planned for the near future. The need for a qualified,
competent and experienced workforce is pressing not only because
the average age of those working in the nuclear business today
is, generally speaking, quite high, but also because many new
recruits will be needed in nuclear-related fields in the coming
These challenges were discussed
in detail during three intensive days of debating at NESTet
2008. The conference gave experts in the nuclear business
a unique opportunity to debate core related issues and
to share their views on how to deal with them. It kicked
off on with an opening session chaired by Santiago San
Antonio, the Secretary General of the European Nuclear
Society. During the session the participants were also
able to attend a ceremony for the presentation of European
Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering (EMSNE) diplomas
to students who had graduated in 2007.
Over the next three days the following topics
were the the main focus of delegates’ attention: training
programmes for the nuclear industry, experimental facilities
for education and training, science, engineering and technology
in education and the role of education in knowledge management.
The conference also gave participants an opportunity to participate
in sessions dealing with the Nucleonica Web Portal, radiation
protection issues and the IAEA’s activities in the field
of nuclear knowledge management.
A total of lmost 70 presentions were given during
the conference. A further 18 poster displays highlighting these
issues gave participants an extra chance to learn more about
their chosen fields of interest.
On the second evening, the NESTet Conference
Dinner took place at the Baroque Hall of Budapest’s Historical
Museum, which is situated in the Royal Palace of the Castle of
Buda. The Baroque Hall provided an incredibly beautiful setting
for the dinner and an opportunity for colleagues from all over
the world to socialise. The dinner guests were entertained by
a band playing traditional Hungarian music and served a delicious
dinner in an unforgettable atmosphere.
On the final day of NESTet 2008 participants
took part in one of two technical tours: the first was a visit
the Paks Nuclear Power Plant; the second was a trip to the Budapest
Research Reactor at the Central Research Institute of Physics
and to the Training Reactor of the Budapest University of Technology
and Economics. As a Young Generation reporter, I visited the
Paks NPP and found the excursion very interesting. In my opinion,
this fascinating and informative visit was a perfect ending to
a perfect conference.
Working as a Young Generation
Network reporter at NESTet 2008 was a wonderful experience for
me personally. I met numerous new people and had extremely interesting
discussions - both about their nuclear industries and their cultural
and educational backgrounds. Attending the conference gave me
an opportunity to learn more about the nuclear industry in various
countries, as well as about the current challenges that the industry
is facing world wide.
I am very grateful for having been given the
opportunity to attend this conference. I am sure that all the
other participants share my feelings about how well ENS organised
the event. I am also confident that they share my view that this
conference is extremely important and that we need to focus continually
on education and training in the nuclear field. This debate will
doubtless continue intensively over the next two years and at
the next NESTet conference.
On behalf of myself, the Young Generation network and participants
at NESTet 2008 I would like to thank ENS for making this conference
such a success.
TVO OL3 Project
Teollisuuden Voima Oyj