|A BMW Korea official gives a lecture to students during the car company's Young Talent Dream Project at Gyeonggi High School of Automotive Science in Siheung, Gyeonggi Province, April 25. Courtesy of BMW Korea|
By Kim Jae-heun
BMW Korea kicked off its "Young Talent Dream Project," as part of its efforts to contribute to fostering skilled young workers and creating jobs here.
In particular, the German carmaker will take advantage of its specialty to educate high school students who want to be automotive engineers or mechanics. The program will be run by the non-profit BMW Korea Future Fund.
The Young Talent Dream Project shares with students the experiences of automotive workers and gives them guidance on how to find the right jobs on their own.
Since April, BMW Korea has been sending executives and technicians from its official dealer firms to schools and universities to give speeches on their jobs and the car industry.
The very first lecture took place at Gyeonggi High School of Automotive Science in Siheung, Gyeonggi Province, and BMW Korea has visited three more since then, including: Ewha Womans University, Hanyang Technical High School and Hanyang University.
Two hundred students have participated in this program, receiving education in the fields of branding, sales, mechanical work and judicial affairs in the car business and in the making of automotive parts.
BMW Korea is planning to visit a total of 15 high schools and universities this year as part of the Young Talent Dream Project.
The German carmaker is also working on solving job market issues here by offering opportunities to students.
It has been running its Apprentice Program since 2004, where it picks students with outstanding performance in automotive subjects and provides them with scholarships, as well as job opportunities, at BMW's dealer firms.
Students selected for the Apprentice Program will be given a chance to work at BMW Service Centers. When they graduate from college, they can join the BMW Group Academy to receive systematic training before beginning their professional careers.
BMW Korea has signed a memorandum of understanding with 21 local universities, and in 2017 it introduced the "Ausbildung" system for the first time in Korea. "Ausbildung" refers to a vocational education and training program in Germany that is best known for fostering automotive mechanics and engineers.
Through the Ausbildung system, 217 people have been hired at seven of BMW Korea's official dealer shops, as of last October. The German carmaker has plans in September to recruit new workers who went through the professional automotive education program.
BMW Korea said that it has created jobs for at least 16,000 people both directly and indirectly.
It has also donated 132 vehicles since 2001 to high schools and colleges related to carmaking, for research use and education.
"BMW Korea will not only fulfill its corporate social responsibility in the country, but also continue to share its vision for improving Korean society, and establish itself as a strong partner to seek mutual growth," the German carmaker said.