Volkswagen Chattanooga announced Friday that the three-year Automation Mechatronics Program (AMP) and Car Mechatronic Program (CMP) offered in its Volkswagen Academy will be upgraded from a technical diploma to an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree in Mechatronics Engineering Technology. The degree is offered through Volkswagen’s on-going partnership with Chattanooga State Community College.
The program will add general educational classes in science, technology, engineering, math and language arts to offer a more well-rounded education for the program that trains employees for skilled team member positions at the LEED Platinum certified factory.
“We are very pleased to be able to enhance the Mechatronic programs to offer an Associate Degree,” said Sebastian Patta, vice president of Human Resources for Volkswagen Chattanooga. “This is an excellent opportunity for Chattanoogans to pursue a career with skills that are very much in demand and an important addition to our educational offerings.”
Volkswagen Chattanooga’s Automation Mechatronics Program offers training in multiple disciplines providing students with knowledge and hands-on skills in machining, electricity, pneumatics, programmable logic controllers, robotics, fault analysis and automation.
The Car Mechatronics Program is upgrading to an AAS as well. There are several classes the two programs have in common, but AMP focuses more on industrial systems (the factory), while the CMP focuses on automotive systems (the car).
“We have successfully managed and taught the Mechatronics program at the Volkswagen Academy for the past three years and changing it to an Associate’s degree program is the next evolution in keeping the program a gold standard in technical education for the rest of the country to emulate”, said Dr. Jim Barrott, vice president for Technology at Chattanooga State. “Our partnership with Volkswagen is very strong and we look forward to many years of providing high-quality technical education for them."
There are currently 51 students in the AMP and 10 students in the newer CMP. In 2013, 36 students will be added to the AMP and CMP programs. The first students to complete the three-year program will graduate in August of 2013. The application period begins now and ends April 30, for the Summer semester.
The Volkswagen AMP and CMP programs will be certified through German American Chamber of Commerce in Atlanta. The German American Chamber is coordinating with the DHIK, which is the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry. This will give these programs international reach for the students.
The Volkswagen Academy will be hosting three open house events this spring in the Volkswagen Academy. This will allow potential students, families, educators and interested community members to tour the high-tech buildings at the academy and discuss the programs with Volkswagen and Chattanooga State officials. The schedule is:
· Wednesday, March 20: 9 a.m.–4 p.m.
· Thursday, March 21: 5:30–8 p.m.
· Thursday, April 18: 5:30–8 p.m.
For more information and to sign up for the program, please go to www.ChattanoogaState.edu and then click on the Volkswagen Academy button on the main page.