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Holzindustrie Schweighofer supports dual vocational education in Siret

Holzindustrie Schweighofer offers financial support, in partnership with the Technical College Latcu Voda and Siret Town Hall, for establishing a dual vocational education class with a mechanical profile (industrial machinery and installations).

“Dual vocational education is a great opportunity for students to prepare themselves according to the market requirements. Upon graduation they will be able to immediately start a job in the industrial sector. Moreover, the vocational stipend they receive will contribute to reducing drop-out. The positive effects will be felt at both the level of the economy and the local community more generally,” said Adrian Popoiu, Mayor of Siret.

Starting in the autumn of 2019, middle school graduates in the Siret area have the opportunity to apply for a new class with 28 students, with a strong emphasis on hands-on teaching. During the three years of study, the amount of practical training increases gradually to 70% of the time. Practical training takes place in the school workshops as well as in the Holzindustrie Schweighofer units in Siret and Radauti.

“It is no longer a surprise that trades and crafts are much in demand. Skilled workers are leaving the country and the workforce is depleted,” said Horea Mitrea, manager of the Holzindustrie Schweighofer panels factory in Siret. “One of the solutions available now is that private companies, educational institutions and local authorities join forces and contribute to the education and development of the young. It is a great effort, with medium- and long-term effects. We’ll be seeing results in a few years. I hope that the future generations understand that even at home in Romania they can have an accomplished career, and through hard work and dedication they can secure a good future for themselves.”

Sorina Rautu, HR manager at Holzindustrie Schweighofer Radauti, added: “I hope there will be great interest among the 8th-graders with a vocation for mechanical matters, that they will apply and complete the courses. Practical training in the factories is a great way for them to identify future career opportunities. When they graduate they won’t have to work for the company, but we would very much like that they remain at home. Radauti and Siret have very good job offers in the industrial sector, with modern working conditions, safe jobs, numerous benefits and excellent career prospects.”

Students in the programme will receive a 200 lei monthly stipend from the Romanian Government and 200 lei from Holzindustrie Schweighofer. The company also provides free transportation to the factory as well as work and safety gear. Holzindustrie Schweighofer Siret and Holzindustrie Schweighofer Radauti each support seven of the stipends, while another local company supports the other half of the class.

Starting in June 2019, middle school graduates will be able to apply for the programme at the Technical College Latcu Voda in Siret.

“Dual vocational education is a great opportunity for the students, the companies, and also for the community. We were glad when the request came from Holzindustrie Schweighofer to train students in a novel class with the mechanical profile - industrial machinery and installations. Apart from the material benefits (the vocational stipend of 200 lei from the Romanian Government, an equal monthly stipend from the company, work gear, free transportation from Siret to the Radauti sawmill during practical training), the students will receive factory training, which will greatly improve their qualifications and ease their access to the job market,” said Doina Puiu, director of the Technical College Latcu Voda.

Holzindustrie Schweighofer already has three years of experience in supporting vocational education. In 2016, at the Technical College in Moinesti (Bacau county) a similar class was established, where 28 Schweighofer stipend beneficiaries are trained as electricians and industrial locksmiths.