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Kozminski University (KU) — one of Poland's most recognized non-public higher education institutions — offers a broad range of business-oriented courses and programs, helping more than 9,000 students learn and grow. Indeed, while the influential UK newspaper Financial Times ranks the university as the best business school in Central and Eastern Europe, it has been accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the European Quality Improvement System (EQUIS), and the Association of MBAs (AMBA), the so-called triple crown of accreditation only held by 100 business schools worldwide. In short, impressive achievements like these, in both global and national educational rankings, ably demonstrate the quality of KU's programs and services.
With the pace of technological progress only accelerating, universities face their fair share of challenges. For instance, how can they best provide immersive and inclusive digital experiences for students? And, in a highly competitive environment, how can they attract the best and brightest candidates, candidates who increasingly choose a university precisely according to its ability to adapt to new digital technologies?
Around the world, leading universities are increasingly coming to terms with the impact of technological innovation by cooperating directly with technology partners, exploring ways to become more digitally connected. KU is no different in this regard and is committed to an ongoing exploration of just what it is that technology can do. Huawei, of course, like many of its peers, is actively engaged in partnerships with universities worldwide: the company is embedded within the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) research ecosystem in Europe through a diverse range of university engagements and technology partnerships. Indeed, increasingly, Europe is becoming home to some of the finest software engineers in the world.
Huawei's ongoing partnership with KU has included establishing an ICT Academy program and partnering to offer a postgraduate studies Cyber Security Management course. And in 2020, Huawei Poland and KU entered a partnership agreement to provide students in the Bachelor in Management and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Program with access to Huawei tools, training, and webinars. As a result, KU students have already gained access to several levels of training where they can broaden their knowledge in technologies such as 5G, big data, AI, and cloud computing.
Following the launch of both the postgraduate studies in Cyber Security Management and the ICT Academy program, Huawei Poland and KU kicked off another joint initiative, to provide students with an innovative educational product solution — HUAWEI IdeaHub. IdeaHub is a next generation collaboration and videoconferencing tool that has already received both a Red Dot Design Award 2020 and an iF Design Award 2021. Enhancing the capabilities of any smart office space — or, as in this case, classroom — IdeaHub combines a range of advanced collaboration and communication functions, from intelligent handwriting recognition on the product's smart whiteboard, to High Definition (HD) videoconferencing and wireless content sharing. And supporting all this, under the hood so to speak, are two advanced System-on-a-Chip (SoC) integrated circuits.
While AI algorithms enable precise, efficient calculations, automatically generating charts, up to 12 built-in microphones, allied to six speakers and a 4K camera, significantly increase communication quality and therefore efficiency. Meanwhile, other technologies enable features such as the automatic transfer of notes prepared by a teacher to students during classes, with communication with external devices all handled seamlessly — and wirelessly.
"We are very pleased with our cooperation with Huawei, which allows us to develop both remote and hybrid teaching formats on a completely different level. We see it as another element of the ambitious process of our digital transformation," said Professor Aleksandra Przegalińska-Skierkowska, Vice-Rector for International Relations and ESR, and Leader of the Bachelor in Management and Artificial Intelligence program.
When the pandemic hit in 2020, the KU community — both the faculty and administrative team — quickly launched a remote learning mode. As such, the HUAWEI IdeaHub solution was an effective facilitator, helping to keep standards high as the university's students attended class remotely.
"This smart classroom will allow us to have really inclusive education in the future, to invite everyone remotely, as well as physically, to participate in high-quality classes," added Professor Przegalińska-Skierkowska. In effect, an advanced learning environment allows the university to support and improve academic performance, future employability rates, and the overall progress of students.
Any digital journey is a complex process. But KU has already taken significant steps toward implementing digital transformation and is committed to being a leader, establishing strong digital goals and transforming itself into an agile, vibrant institution with a future-facing digital personality.