Rolls-Royce Power Systems Offers Training to Refugees

Rolls-Royce's MTU Friedrichshafen subsidiary is currently training 10 refugees, two of which will be selected to commence an apprenticeship with MTU.

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Ten refugees are currently taking part in a 7-month preparatory course at MTU Friedrichshafen, the Rolls-Royce Power Systems subsidiary. Two will then be selected to commence an apprenticeship at MTU in the autumn. For their eight classmates, says Marcus A. Wassenberg, Labour Director and member of the board responsible for HR, the chances of securing an apprenticeship place at another company will have substantially improved for them: “We are the first major company in the region to make a decisive contribution to helping people who have been forced to leave their homeland to integrate into our labor market.” The project is being supported by the Constance-Ravensburg Employment Agency and the Lake Constance district authority.

The young men firstly receive basic training in metalworking, provided by a trainer who has been specially released from his routine duties in order to give them further support and mentoring in coming to grips with everyday life. During their course at MTU, the upcoming apprentices also attend the local vocational college in Friedrichshafen, where they receive special tuition in German on top of their technical training. 

“I'm delighted to be able to offer these young people a chance like this. And I'm very proud of the commitment shown by our training staff and of our constructive partnership with the Constance-Ravensburg employment agency and the regional authority. This initiative shows that Rolls-Royce Power Systems is very aware of its social responsibilities in the region,” says Wassenberg.

Dr. Carolin Bischoff, Director of the Lake Constance-Upper Swabia regional section of Employers' Association Südwestmetall, also says, “It shows the commitment of local businesses to integrating refugees into the labor market,  and it gives these 10 young people a valuable opportunity to qualify themselves for the market by acquiring practical skills and improving their language proficiency.”

The post-apprenticeship period is also being catered for, with an event being planned in cooperation with the Constance-Ravensburg Employment Agency. Here, newly qualified apprentices will be able to specifically apply for positions at companies in the region. Jutta Driesch, who chairs the management board at the Constance-Ravensburg Employment Agency says, “On the one hand, our aim on this project is to make sure that training is made basically available to young people. On the other, we want to support local businesses in their integration efforts. And looking to the future, this makes a contribution to securing our skilled labor base.” 

The 10 refugees come from Afghanistan, the Gambia, the Lebanon, Nigeria and Syria. They have settled in well among their fellow apprentices, and have now made great progress in overcoming the language barrier. Martin Stocker, head of training at MTU Friedrichshafen, gave a very positive summary: “You can tell how important it is to these lads to be able to demonstrate their capabilities, and that is actually very motivating for me and my trainers.”