Gothenburg Technical College (GTC) based in Sweden, and owned by Volvo Group is among the universities and colleges participating in student exchange programs around the world. The exchange program has gained immense popularity with the number of students doubling up in the recent past. This comes in the wake of employers valuing more virtues such as adaptability, cultural awareness, tolerance and transversal skills.
Besides, the world today continues to evolve, simultaneously, undergoing rapid and deep changes. The changes are brought about by the advancement of technology resulting to job market requiring specific education and vocational trainings. From Europe, Asia, Africa, United States to Australia, all are in demand of high skilled manpower. GTC, well known as “a hub for technical training” in Sweden has seized the moment, and it is at the forefront of bridging the gap that exist in today’s labour market by providing skilled manpower to companies in need.
Incepted 25-years ago, and situated in Gothenburg, the institution was initially tasked with providing manpower to Volvo Group. With time, the college diversified and begun to supply European industries with manpower. Undeniably, GTC has been instrumental in shaping the global workforce, and is unafraid of spreading its wings.
For the longest time, GTC has been sending out students on location for internships to different Volvo companies spread all over the world. So far, the college has send students to United States of America, Australia, Malaysia, China, Belgium, and France, with an intention of students gaining hands-on experience.
The students are mostly engineers, and have an option of choosing the technical programs thereafter join the university of choice to sharpen their skills. The institution concurrently offers mechanical programs where students specialize more on maintenance in industries.
Besides, GTC provides continuous trainings for Volvo employees together with supplier companies to realign with the technical changes in the world. In recent years, there have been a lot of electrical mobility, as the whole industry is now shifting from fossil fuel to electric.
However, lack of its presence in Africa prompted the management to start exploring the continent. It didn’t take long for the college to establish key relationships with institutions such as Soweto Academy and Technical University of Kenya. In addition, it has been able to engage Tetra Park, Omnibus, Omnibus, SKF and Swedish Embassy on ways to collaborate and establish mutual relationship that would be beneficial to all in the future.
GTC entranced into the African continent to be precise Kenya, is to explore the immense opportunities, establish partnerships and connect with as many organizations as possible, at the same time, exchange ideas not to mention understanding the East Africa region as whole, market and culture.
The college has already begun with Soweto Academy, situated in Kibera one of the biggest urban slums in Nairobi. According to GTC representatives Markus Wiedel and Alexandra Haldorsen who visited the country in February with students, GTC is trying to learn on how the Kenyan schools operate, classes work, the students and the way of life in Kibera in general. In return, GTC students teach the Soweto Academy students about maintenance which is one of the core subject at their institution. In fact, in September this year, the Soweto Academy students are set to travel to Sweden for an exchange program.
The team reiterated that the partnership with the school is more of cultural, and learning from each other. They also believe that the exchange program will help curb racism slur that has been in-existence for decades. Essentially, the students in Sweden will get an opportunity to study in Africa away from their usual environment whist experiencing the rich history and culture at the same time meeting new friends to enrich their personal development.
It is a journey that Gothenburg Technical College has begun and plans to roll out the program with other like-minded schools, vocational trainings, universities and companies in the near future.