One of Russia’s largest insurance companies opens its first Digital Lab at TPU

The first Digital Lab of one of the backbone Russian insurance companies VSK Insurance House (IJSC VSK) was opened on the basis of the School of Computer Science & Robotics of Tomsk Polytechnic University. TPU students will be able to take paid internships in the company with the opportunity of further employment. 

The solemn opening of the Digital Lab was held in the framework of the U-NOVUS-2018 forum for young scientists at the TPU Cybernetics Center. In addition, at the forum opening, a strategic partnership agreement between VSK and Tomsk Polytechnic University was signed. The document was signed by Sergey Tsikalyuk, Chairman of the Board of Directors of VSK Insurance House and Maksim Vedyashkin, Vice-Rector for Financial and Economic Affairs and General Issues. An agreement on joint training projects and the creation of new jobs was also signed by the company and the Tomsk Oblast Administration.

At the opening ceremony, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of IJSC VSK Sergey Tsikalyuk said:

‘I am very pleased that today we signed the agreement with TPU, that today we open the first class here. I am pleased that we together with you have gone through a period of preparation and achieved the first results. I am grateful to TPU for support, I would like to build up our relations here in Tomsk and at our sites in Moscow, i.e. training and innovation centers. We are open and very interested in the fact that this project will be successful, we will get outcomes in the form of highly educated students and our prospective specialists which will further develop our country together with us. 

I see here the interests of both the University and the governor. It is very important when authorities support and assist such projects.’ 

He added that the development of the digital economy requires more and more qualified staff. The objective reality is that there is a large shortage of IT specialists.

Maksim Vedyashkin noted that the signed agreement with VSK will help directly integrate young people into the workflow, who want to apply their skills, expand their competences, and to increase their ‘price’ on the market.

‘In this format, the tasks of TPU and VSK are simply connected: at least we will create a fine basis for a site which will be a model of growth for other colleagues within the city. The doors of our center will also be open for students from other Tomsk universities,’ explained the TPU Vice-Rector. 

The VSK Digital Lab at TPU is the first laboratory of such kind in Russia. Its establishment in Tomsk is due to the fact that in February 2018 a large VSK development and tester center was opened in the city.  

The lab is designed for 10 places. It is an operational class equipped with computers and all required software in the expense of VSK. The project is intended for third- and fourth-year students and master students. Students should pass a special selection to participate in the project. They will be able to choose one of three internship directions: manual and automated testing, programming in C # (C Sharp), and a novel direction related to technology analytics and robot development. The first group of students is already formed.

The project leader, IJSC VSK HR-partner Sergey Oshaev emphasized:

‘The laboratory is unique since students will work with real projects of the company. In the beginning, we will give them a kind of a reference task already solved by VSK specialists. Solutions proposed by the students will define what tasks we will give them later. I would like to mention that each student will be assigned an experienced mentor. The participants will solve issues related to the development and testing of mobile applications, an online store, components of information systems and so on. The internship of the first group will last till December 2018.’