Volkswagen Chattanooga Celebrates Graduation; Announces New Engineering Specialist Training Program

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Volkswagen Group of America, Chattanooga Operations, LLC (Volkswagen Chattanooga) celebrated its second class to graduate from the Volkswagen Academy’s three-year Automation Mechatronics Program (AMP) in a ceremony that highlighted the German ‘dual education’ system.

Volkswagen also announced the creation of the Engineering Specialist Training program, which targets candidates who have already earned their Bachelor’s degree. They would then receive a concentrated 18-month program that highlights the same hands-on experience of the mechatronics training coupled with three months of international experience at Volkswagen’s headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany.

“Volkswagen Chattanooga put this program in place to play an active part in developing the skilled workforce here in Hamilton County.  We believe these skills are important because they support jobs that add value to the economy,” said Christian Koch, President and CEO of Volkswagen Chattanooga. 

A dual education system combines vocational classroom education and paid on-the-job training in one course. Students receive hands-on-training in mechanical systems, electricity, electronics, machining, welding and automated systems among other disciplines.

“Through these programs, Volkswagen Chattanooga is thinking globally and acting locally,” said Sebastian Patta, EVP Human Resources.  “Why import talent, when we can develop it here and create a lasting impact on the economy? We are committed to training our local workforce with the most advanced technical skills specific to our developing business needs,” Patta said.

After being the first company to be certified by the by the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) and the German American Chambers of Commerce (AHK USA) for the Automation Mechatronics Program in 2013, the Volkswagen Academy will be receiving another certificate in 2014 for outstanding performance and is now recognized as an educational institute by the German American Chamber of Commerce.

The certificate acknowledges companies training according to the German standards in the highest category defined by the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK) in Berlin. 

“Volkswagen’s Automation Mechatronics program is an exceptional example of what a vocational training program in the U.S. can be,” said Martina Stellmaszek, President and CEO, German American Chamber of Commerce of the Southern U.S., Inc. “The continued success of this program and its graduates is directly tied to Volkswagen’s ongoing partnership with local colleges throughout Tennessee. Vocational training programs like Volkswagen’s, are graduating candidates who are well-trained, prepared and have the skills needed to perform the job.”

Volkswagen Chattanooga partners with Chattanooga State Community College to implement the Automation Mechatronics Program in the cutting edge 163,000 sq. ft. Volkswagen Academy.

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