“As a mechatronics engineer you have good future prospects and in time can specialize in a certain field.”
After finishing my advanced vocational certificate of education, in September 2018 I started training to be a mechatronics engineer at KHS in Dortmund. I’m now in my second year of training.
There’s actually no such thing as a typical working day! We learn the mechanical and electrical basics such as drilling, turning, milling, soldering or wiring. We work in many different fields and are given tasks we then complete independently (such as drilling a hole, installing components or manufacturing spare parts). I can now do lots of mechanical and electrical things on my own that are also needed at installation sites. You also learn how to wire a plug, for example – in other words, things you can use at home. There’s always something new to be learned, for instance countersinking bolts in order to ground parts.
With regard to working hours, we work 35 hours a week. In the first year you start at 6.30 in the morning and are then finished at 2.15 pm. From your second year onwards your working hours are more flexible: for example, you can start earlier and then leave at 11.15 am on Fridays if you want.
What I especially like is that there are lots of kind employees and colleagues who go to great lengths to teach you things and explain the various work steps and components. The atmosphere here is sometimes very friendly and informal. Each year we trainees have a summer party and a spring brunch at the production site in Dortmund. This is always fun and the mood’s great. You can also take part in various projects as a trainee. We also help organize the annual St Nicholas party for the children of our employees, for example. I also really like the company premises here in Dortmund – it’s not every company that has its own street!
“I really enjoy the installation assignments – and our uniform KHS work clothes!”
What I find special about my job are the installation assignments you can take part in during your training. We also have uniform work clothes with a special KHS design which I really like. The work’s sometimes physically hard but there’s nothing you can’t manage. It can also be dangerous from time to time but if you act with due care and attention and keep to the health and safety rules you and everyone else will be fine.
What’s also special about KHS is that it’s international. We’re represented across the globe and our customers are famous the world over (such as Coca-Cola or Heineken).
You have many future prospects as more and more specialist workers are needed in mechatronics jobs. On this course you can put the theory you’ve learned straight into practice – unlike at university. As a mechatronics engineer you’re flexible and in time can specialize in a certain field depending on your interests or skills.
Traveling and backpacking especially are a big hobby of mine; I’ve made many new friends all over the world on my travels. I play the guitar and violin in my spare time, like dancing and hiking and meeting up with friends. I’m also trying to improve my Japanese by learning the characters and building up my vocabulary.
I also like photographing the different countries and cultures I visit.
Site Dortmund in brief
Average years of service with the company
Bottle washers, Pasteurizers, Labelers and inspection technology, Conveyor technology