Jakarta – BRIN Public Relations. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), an institution under the auspices of the United Nations, has held virtual kick off meetings and coordination with 14 countries related to nuclear education for 10 million students in the Asia and Pacific region in order to prepare future nuclear scientists, Friday (1/4).

This nuclear education will be carried out until 2026 through collaboration between joint research organizations and the education sector involving more than 20 countries and 3 technical projects, with Indonesia as one of reference countries with experience in packaging nuclear into interactive content for teachers and students.

Marina Mishar, the PMO of Technical Cooperation of IAEA’s Asia and Pacific Division, said that this program is a combination of the Educating Nuclear S&T for Secondary School scheme, the International Nuclear S&T Academy, and the Asian Network for Education in Nuclear Technology platform. This educational program is open to all countries in the Asia and Pacific region, with the aim of strengthening regional cooperation and ensuring that future human resources can utilize nuclear technology.

Marina admitted that the benchmark in targeting 10 million students is IAEA’s success in educating 1.6 million students in 11 countries by 2021, including Indonesia. This benchmark will be supported by the development of digital platforms and the role of universities, as well as an increase in the number of countries that will be involved.

In line with Marina, the Designated Project Monitoring Person for countries in the 2018-2021 IAEA education project, Adipurwa Muslich said IAEA member countries as a whole have implemented this program. “All Member States have succeeded in designing and implementing their national programs in the form of interactive teacher training and outreach so as to educate 1.6 million students. This means that we have exceeded the target by 160% of One Million Students in the 2021 jargon,” said Adipurwa.

In addition to being actively involved since 2015, continued Adipurwa, Indonesia through the National Research and Innovation Agency (BRIN) has become the IAEA reference country in revising nuclear topics in the national curriculum, producing interactive teaching materials including practicums that can be used in schools, and developing Virtual Reality and Augmented Objects for optimizing nuclear education visit services in BRIN’s Serpong area for students during the pandemic.

“Until 2021, Indonesia has provided training on nuclear topics for 987 teachers which directly impacted nearly 200,000 students, exhibitions, and visits that reached 48,566 students. To improve competence, 13 Indonesian teachers have also participated in international trainings organized by the IAEA in Illinois, Manila, Kuala Lumpur, Sydney, Tokyo, and Yogyakarta,” added Adipurwa.

The nuclear education initiated by the IAEA has been realized in the form of preparing aids for science teaching for schools, expert missions for countries that need assistance in organizing national programs, scientific visits, fellowships, and other interactive activities such as virtual exhibitions, to international competitions.

“Starting in 2022, nuclear education dedicated to high school students will begin to be integrated with universities, as a form of synergy to create a pipeline to pass the baton from nuclear scientists to the next generation,” he concluded. (am)