Watch the transcript of the debate "Cadres of the future on the basis of the H2 Academy" during H2POLAND 2023


Watch the transcript of the debate "HR of the future based on the H2 Academy", which took place on 16 May during the Central European Hydrogen Forum H2POLAND 2023.

The future of the hydrogen sector in Poland was discussed by the participants of the debate "Cadres of the future on the basis of the H2 Academy". This panel was hosted by PKN ORLEN SA - Strategic Partner of the Central European Hydrogen Forum H2POLAND 2023, and moderated by Jakub Wiech - Editor-in-Chief of the portal.

The development of the hydrogen sector is a great opportunity, the success of which depends, among other things, on the availability of experts. We need professionals who will be able to create and find applications for innovative hydrogen technologies. Without qualified personnel, it is difficult to talk about the development of this branch of the economy. The H2 Academy, set up by PKN ORLEN to act as an incubator of competences related to the hydrogen industry, is to be a response to this need.

- We have prepared a hydrogen strategy at PKN ORLEN, which envisages ambitious plans for both transport and industry - said Grzegorz Jóźwiak, Director of ORLEN's Hydrogen and Synthetic Fuels Technology Office. - The projects with a budget of PLN 7.4 billion to be implemented by the end of this decade are largely low-carbon projects that require specialised knowledge and competence. We have realised that we need qualified human resources to execute these investment projects and handle them after implementation. We are counting on young people to help us in this area. The energy transition has set off a global technology race.

Those who think creatively, act quickly and have access to knowledge will count in this race. The H2 Academy is an initiative implemented in public-private partnership, with companies such as Toyota and PESA, as well as with universities - the Technical University of Łódź, the Warsaw University of Technology, the Gdańsk University of Technology and the KEZO Research Centre of the Polish Academy of Sciences. 30 students from 14 universities were selected for the first edition of the ORLEN project. The academy is based on two pillars - the theoretical one, for which the universities are responsible, and the practical one, which consists, among other things, of visits to the production facilities of the initiative's partners.

- We created the programme focusing on showing the practical side of hydrogen technology - stressed Grzegorz Jóźwiak. - As PKN ORLEN, we showed, among other things, the electrolysers that are used to produce hydrogen, while our partners from Toyota and PESA demonstrated the use of hydrogen in transport. It is this practical aspect that is new in thinking about student education.

- We have the answers to many questions at our fingertips. We have the opportunity to contact and exchange ideas with experts who work on hydrogen innovations on a daily basis - said Karolina Molska, a participant in the H2 Academy, during the debate.

The panellists taking part in the debate unanimously emphasised that by gaining knowledge, students also become a link between business and the world of science. As Beata Łuszczyńska, Ph.D., representing the Technical University of Łódź, said: - The H2 Academy initiative is unique because it results in the mobilisation of both environments - science and business - to the great benefit of both parties.

- Companies with a large number of patents and experience need unfettered thinking. A scientific outlook is also needed. There would be no hydrogen transport without this cooperation - pointed out Andrzej Szałek, Ph.D., Advisor to the Board of Directors at Toyota Central Europe.

Students at the H2 Academy represent very different fields of study - from biotechnology to international relations. This shows that all these disciplines are needed to create a thriving hydrogen sector. By combining their knowledge and experience, the project is likely to provide the necessary impetus for the development of hydrogen technology in Poland.