They want a closer collaboration with the industry
Dahlske high school in Grimstad is preparing to meet the demands of the battery industry with its new three-year automation program. Now, they are seeking closer contact with businesses, both nationally and internationally.
- We also aim to arrange for an international company placement, says Jannicke Danielsen, Head of the Department for Electrical and Automation.
New this year is the school's offering of a three-year program in automation studies.
This year, more girls have also shown interest in this program after the school organized a girls' day to showcase the study offerings. The result was a doubling of the number of girls compared to last year, with 10 girls enrolled in the program.
- I find it exciting, and it's the future. Everything is becoming automated now, says Annika Ragnarsdottir (18), a student in the Automation program.
- They will recruit from us
Both the department head and teachers desire a much closer collaboration with companies, so they can together develop the skills needed in the future.
- When everyone is isolated in their own corner, there's no coordination, says Danielsen, who wishes for more coordination and collaboration.
Now, they have both Fagskolen i Agder and the University of Agder just a stone's throw away, and some collaboration is happening there.
- We want the business community to be more active and take the initiative to visit us and convey their needs. I feel there's an artificial divide between school and industry. But this is where they will recruit from, says Magnus Dybfest, a teacher in the Automation program, who himself has a background in the offshore industry.
- We will assist the industry with skilled professionals. The goal is to provide students with a highly relevant education, says teacher Knut Einar Refstie.
He believes that one reason for the limited contact with the industry is the lower presence of process industry in the eastern part of Agder. The situation is different in the western part of Agder, as they have a long tradition of process industries.
Record number of apprentices
At Alcoa Lista, they currently have a record number of apprentices as they have heavily invested in preparing for the company's generational shift. Plant Director Grethe Hindersland believes that engaged and competent individuals are essential for the success of Alcoa Lista.
- For this reason, we have had a strategic and targeted focus on attracting and developing tomorrow's employees. Not only in industrial and chemical fields, but also in other disciplines like IT and electricians. We are facing a generational shift where we unfortunately have to see a number of skilled employees retire. By investing in apprentices today, we ensure a seamless transition without losing many years of knowledge. The goal is to have the right people in place when we reinvent the aluminum industry for a sustainable future, Hindersland tells Lister24 newspaper.
By investing in apprentices today, she hopes to ensure a seamless transition without losing many years of knowledge. The company also closely collaborates with the training office in Lister.
There are only three automation programs in Agder.