Volkswagen Group honors its best apprentices from all over the world

From left to right: Maria Bohlen (Volkswagen Emden), Anselm-Vincent Gebhardt (Volkswagen Nutzfahrzeuge, Hannover), Matthias Behr (Volkswagen Kassel), Marleen Krenmayer (Volkswagen Sachsen, Zwickau), Nils Hahn (Volkswagen Osnabrück), Annika Jeremias (Volkswagen Financial Services, Braunschweig), Tim Lippert (Volkswagen Sachsen, Zwickau), Marvin Rehra (Volkswagen, Salzgitter) Felix Bethmann (Volkswagen Braunschweig), Carina Polochowitz (Volkswagen Wolfsburg), Maren Wisweh (Volkswagen, Wolfsburg).The Volkswagen Group today presented its “Best Apprentice Awards 2013” to young top achievers from all over the world. The awards went to 9 women and 31 men in 20 training vocations. During their apprenticeships, they convincingly demonstrated excellent performance and specialist competence. A total of 40 young talents from 15 countries on 5 continents were honored. Throughout the world, the Volkswagen Group is training more than 18,000 young people, more than ever before.

The awards were presented by the Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft, Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, Member of the Board of Management responsible for Human Resources, Dr. Horst Neumann, and the President of the Global Group Works Council, Bernd Osterloh. The ceremony took place at Volkswagen’s Brunswick plant on the occasion of a meeting of the Group Board of Management and the Global Group Works Council.

Prof. Winterkorn underscored: “All of the young award winners have demonstrated outstanding performance during their apprenticeships. We are relying on them to be tomorrow’s high performers. Great dedication and professional skill on the part of our employees are one of the factors behind the Volkswagen Group’s success. That is why we will continue to invest extensively in training and developing young people.”

Dr. Neumann said: “Specialist knowledge and skills are an essential pre-requisite for a top high-performance team. For that reason, the Volkswagen Group sets great store by first-class vocational training. Throughout the world, we are training more than 18,000 young people in a vocation, more than ever before. We are investing in the future of the company while at the same time offering young people very good career prospects.”

Osterloh commented: “The dual vocational training model practiced at Volkswagen has become something like a global USP. The young people and their exceptional performance bear witness to the success of this model. By providing vocational training in all parts of the world, Volkswagen is assuming social responsibility for young people and for the regions where the Group is active.”

In recognition of their achievements, the 40 award winners aged between 18 and 28 years were invited to Germany to participate in an exciting program spanning several days. This year’s “Best Apprentice Award” was the 13th of its kind presented by the Volkswagen Group, and a total of 298 apprentices have been honored since 2001.


The apprentices honored today were (in alphabetical order):

Norman Addis, electrical engineer (Volkswagen of South Africa, Uitenhage, South Africa), Iurii Alekseev, automotive mechatronics technician (Volkswagen Group Rus, Kaluga, Russia), André Astalosch, automotive technician and electrician (MAN Truck Bus AG, Vienna, Austria), Matthias Behr, foundry mechanic (Volkswagen, Kassel), Felix Bethmann, industrial mechanic (Volkswagen, Brunswick), Maria Bohlen, specialist in haulage and logistics services (Volkswagen, Emden), Daniel Butler, mechatronics technician (Bentley, Crewe, Great Britain), Christina Fiedler, industrial business administrator (MAN Diesel Turbo, Oberhausen), Anselm-Vincent Gebhardt, industrial mechanic (Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, Hanover), Pedro Filipe Gomes Pinto, automotive mechatronics technician (Volkswagen Autoeuropa, Setúbal, Portugal), Nils Hahn, systems IT technician (Volkswagen Osnabrück), Marko Heer, automation electronics engineer (Audi, Neckarsulm), Annika Jeremias, specialist in insurance and finance (Volkswagen Financial Services, Brunswick), Peter Košut, automotive electrician (Volkswagen Slovakia, Bratislava, Slovakia), Marleen Krenmayer, warehouse logistics specialist (Volkswagen Sachsen, Zwickau), Martin Liegl, automotive technician/electrician (Porsche Inter Auto, Salzburg, Austria), Tim Lippert, vehicle paint technician (Volkswagen Sachsen, Zwickau), Xingxing Lu, industrial mechanic (Shanghai-Volkswagen, Shanghai, China), Janik Maciej, mechatronics technician (Volkswagen Motor Polska, Polkowice, Poland), Francisco Maldonado de la Torre, automotive mechatronics technician (SEAT, Martorell, Spain), Juan Pedro Mariño Munárriz, mechatronics technician (Volkswagen Navarra, Pamplona, Spain), Elisabeth Mayer, automation electronics engineer (Audi, Ingolstadt), Diveshini Naidoo, industrial engineer (Volkswagen of South Africa, Uitenhage, South Africa), Vinícius Ollitta de Andrade, mechatronics technician (Volkswagen do Brasil, São Bernardo do Campo, Brazil), Jakub Patočka, industrial mechanic (ŠKODA, Mladá Boleslav, Czech Republic), Patryk Piaseczny, mechatronics technician (Volkswagen Poznań, Poland), Luca Pirrè, mechatronics technician (Lamborghini, Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy), Carina Polochowitz, metal cutting mechanic (Volkswagen, Wolfsburg), Fabián Prado Lara, mechatronics technician (Volkswagen de México, Puebla, Mexico), Andreas Rathmayr, vehicle paint technician (Porsche, Stuttgart), Marvin Rehra, automation electronics engineer (Volkswagen, Salzgitter), Bruno Rothbächer, materials tester (MAN Diesel Turbo, Augsburg), Pavel Schneeberger, industrial mechanic (ŠKODA, Mladá Boleslav, Czech Republic), Sebastian Seidler, metal cutting mechanic (MAN Truck Bus, Salzgitter), Zsolt Takács, automotive electrician (Audi Hungaria Motor, Györ, Hungary), Maximilian Winhard, tool engineer (Audi, Ingolstadt), Maren Wisweh, specialist in office communication (Volkswagen, Wolfsburg), Lei Zhang, metal cutting mechanic (FAW-Volkswagen, Changchun, China), Qinghai Zhang, automotive mechatronics technician (Volkswagen Automatic Transmission, Dalian, China) and Rebecca Ziegler, vehicle interior fitter (Porsche, Stuttgart).

Nine of the award winners have already been honored in their home countries for their outstanding knowledge and skills in their training vocations. These include Germany’s best apprentice in his vocation in 2012, Chamber of Industry and Commerce national award winner Matthias Behr from Kassel (foundry mechanic). Janik Maciej from Poland (mechatronics technician) was best apprentice in Lower Silesia Province (Polish: Województwo Dolnośląskie) in 2012. André Astalosch (automotive technician and electrician) from Austria won the competition for budding automotive technicians in the federal state of Vienna in 2011. In addition, six apprentices from three federal states were honored as best apprentices 2012 by the Chambers of Industry and Commerce in their respective states: in Bavaria Bruno Rothbächer (materials tester), in Lower Saxony Nils Hahn (systems IT technician), Marvin Rehra (automation electronics engineer), Sebastian Seidler (metal cutting mechanic) and Euro management assistant Maren Wisweh (specialist in office communication) and in Saxony Marleen Krenmayer (warehouse logistics specialist).

15 of the award winners are now taking a degree course with the support of their companies: André Astalosch from Austria (automotive mechanical engineering), Felix Bethmann from Brunswick (mechanical engineering), Christina Fiedler from Oberhausen (business administration), Marko Heer from Neckarsulm (robotics and automation), Annika Jeremias from Brunswick (business administration), Marleen Krenmayer from Zwickau (business administration), XingXing Lu from China (mechatronics), Elisabeth Mayer from Ingolstadt (Electrical engineering and information technology), Vinícius Ollitta de Andrade from Brazil (chemical engineering), Luca Pirrè from Italy (School of Communications), Fabián Prado Lara from Mexico (mechatronics), Andreas Rathmayr from Stuttgart (automotive industry), Marvin Rehra from Salzgitter (automation and energy systems), Sebastian Seidler from Salzgitter (mechanical engineering) and Lei Zhang from China (CNC engineering).