This year began the third intake of the Industrial Master’s Programme in IT and we thought it is about time for us to create a journal, where we will describe the experience and explain the wonder that the Industrial Master’s Programme in IT is. In the future, we will write regular blog posts about seminars, meetings and share the experiences of our Master’s students and their supervisors. 

Third intake
This intake’s kick-off meeting was held at the Institute of Computer Science’s J. Liivi 2 building on January 7th. We invited company representatives as well as new Industrial Master’s. We are pleased to see the following companies joining our programme this year:

And those are the Industrial Master’s Programme students:

How did it all happen? 
Well, for this intake we started recruiting companies really early on. Already in January 2019 at sTARTUp Day. By the end of September 2019, we had 22 positions listed and we were ready to open the application rounds for first-year Master’s students. The students had exactly two weeks for applying and we received 42 applications in total. That is 40% of all the students who joined a Master’s programme at the Institute of Computer Science in 2019. 

Each student sent us their CV and motivational letter, where they mentioned what company they would like to join and why. We decided to offer the students a second position as well, e.g. to do matchmaking. So it was our time to roll up our sleeves and start going through applications. By the end of October, we had memorized most of the motivational letters by heart 🙂

After long discussions with the Master’s programme directors and lecturers, which student would suit the most to a certain company, we sent out our matches to the companies and the interview round began. It took us 1.5 months and me personally 41 hours (!) to have all the interviews. But oh boy, it was worth it. By the end, we had 12 matches left and those are the faces you can see in the photos above. 

What did we do at the kickoff meeting?
We put all of the Industrial Master’s in the same room and went through the spring semester. We introduced them to all those things that they need to know in order to be well prepared and successful during that period. We covered the major topic of the integrated studies.

What is it and how to do it
Since students do most of their specialization courses during the first year in the spring, we focus on those courses. 

Each course’s grade is structured a bit differently, but it might look something like that:

In order for the integration to happen, students will do the course projects and homework assignment in cooperation with the company. For example, using their data.

Sounds good, but how is integration really done?In January students receive the list of courses that can be integrated and see what are the matches between the courses that they are planning to take and courses that can be integrated.

For example:

Student’s choice for spring semester:

Student’s choice for spring semester:

Enterprise System Integration
Business Data Analytics
Business Process Management
Practical training in IT
Industrial Master’s Seminar
Business Analysis
Business Data Analytics 
Business Process Management 
Master’s Seminar on Enterprise Software  Neural Networks
Natural Language Process 
Software Product Management 
Introduction to Wireless Security
Industrial Master’s Seminar
Practical Training in IT

The student can integrate 4 courses out of 5. The next step is that he/she will receive requirements for each course (except Practical Training in IT and Industrial Master’s Seminar, which are designed to be 100% integrated) that are provided by lecturers and start negotiations with the company.

This year the official start of the programme is on the 10th of February with the beginning of the spring semester at the University of Tartu. 

We will meet again with all of the students on the 27th of February when the second intake will meet the third. It will be a historic occasion as we have freshly moved to Delta building and on that same day, there will be the opening of the physical space of Sandbox, which includes rooftop pancake party. We’ll take lots of photos, so stay tuned!