Dual Education Hungary: Dual type education at Mercedes and Knorr-Bremse

Author / Editor: Zsolt Meszaros, Editor in Chief, MM Muszaki Magazin / Lisa Saller, Lisa Saller

Students who participated in the so-called dual type education have recently graduated. The joint training program of Kecskemét College, Mercedes Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd, and Knorr-Bremse Brake Systems ltd., that was launched in 2012, serves as an example for the introduction of such academic training at a national level.

Graduates of the dual type studies of Kecskemét College
Graduates of the dual type studies of Kecskemét College
(Photo: Dudarfoto)

The GAMF Faculty of the College of Kecskemét, in collaboration with its two partner companies, initialized the practice-focused (dual type) system in the bachelors’ level training of vehicles engineering. Goal of the programme is to lay the fundaments of long term commitment to the company as well as its products and to build a safely plannable life-long carreer model. Throughout the hands-on training periods, the partner companies have introduced the development of skills and competences demanded by the industry (collaboration in teamwork, communication and presentation training, owner’s attitude, creativity and innovation). Students have mastered a varied, but very intensive, practice-oriented curriculum in the 3,5 academic years.


Dual type education on the raise

In September 2012, 14 and 11 students of vehicles engineering started their dual type studies at Knorr-Bremse Brake Systems ltd. and Mercedes Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd. respectively. Presently about 200 students of Kecskemét College take part in dual type education with the collaboration of 30 partner companies. Beside the major of vehicles engineering, the majors of mechanical engineering, technology management as well as horticultural engineering are available in dual type education system at a bachelors’ level. Since 2012, all partner companies that launched dual type programmes have accepted applications and broadened the spectrum of eligible majors. Outside of the senior students, further 24 students of dual type education study at Mercedes Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd. and Knorr-Bremse Brake Systems ltd.. 17 of the first „dual students” received their degrees at the convocation ceremony of the college senate. In the name of the companies, Attila Bíró, CEO of Knorr-Bremse Brake Systems ltd. and Tamás Kovács, Chief Technical Officer of Mercedes Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd. greeted the new graduates.

Attila Bíró, CEO of Knorr-Bremse Brake Systems ltd. believes that the dual type education is the optimum solution for the supply of engineers and skilled workforce. "Knorr-Bremse offers such technological and engineering knowledge that represents a unique value and develops marketable skills for all students participating in dual type education. We are satisfied with the students and we are happy to see that this invenstment compensates the challenges of the labor market in the long run. Apart from this, dual type education can be an example for the rest of the domestic companies."

"The planning and introduction of dual type education was a significant milestone in the life of our company. It is our extra pleasure that five of the students involved will strengthen the team of well trained experts of Mercedes Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd." — says Tamás Kovács, chief technical officer of Mercedes Benz Manufacturing Hungary ltd.

After graduation, the work contracts of the students in the dual type education expired, so both parties – fresh graduates and companies – can decide how to carry on. Six of the graduates were offered jobs at the research and development center of Knorr-Bremse Brake Systems ltd. and one graduate was offered to work in the supplier development project. Together with this, more that half of the students take part in masters’ level education with the support of the company.