inside
The employee magazine
of the Volkswagen brand

Employees

What Motivates
Our Top Apprentices

More than 6,000 young people worldwide are currently undertaking an apprenticeship with the Volkswagen brand. We want to introduce to you the best up-and-coming new talent in the company.

Name: Aaron Dotson

Age: 22

Location: Chattanooga, USA
Apprenticeship: mechatronics engineer

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would take the day off.

Do you have any plans for after you finish your apprenticeship?

I would like to improve my programming skills.


Name: Claudio Oliver Cortés

Age: 18
Location: Puebla, Mexico
Apprenticeship: e
lectronics engineer for automation technology

Do you still remember your first day at Volkswagen?

I do. I was impressed by all the technology at Volkswagen. At that moment, I knew I had chosen the right apprenticeship for me.

Where do you see yourself in 20 years?

I would like to be a manager somewhere in the Volkswagen Group. I am doing everything I can to develop the necessary skills by then.

Name: Gabriel Miranda do Nascimento
Age: 19
Location: Anchieta, Brazil
Apprenticeship: mechatronics engineer

What is currently your favorite model by our brand?

It’s definitely the Polo. I have been raised with my parents driving Polos, and the first car project I took part in at Volkswagen was the New Polo.

Do you have any plans for after you finish your apprenticeship?

Definitely. Finishing my engineering degree and taking part in an exchange program to Germany are on the top of my list.

Which song is currently at the top of your playlist?

“We Are The Champions” by Queen.

Name: Filipe Moura
Age: 18
Location: Palmela, Portugal
Apprenticeship: tool mechanic

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would create my own car.

What is currently your favorite model by our brand? Why is that?

The Scirocco, because it’s sporty but also practical for everyday life.

Which song is currently at the top of your playlist?

“A minha casinha” by the legendary Portuguese rock group Xutos e pontapés.


Name: Mikel Gonzalez Oroz
Age: 19
Location: Pamplona, Spain
Apprenticeship: automotive mechatronics engineer

Do you have any plans for after you finish your apprenticeship?

I would like to stay at Volkswagen and continue training to learn about new technologies.

How do you spend your free time?

I love spending my free time with family and friends. I enjoy going hunting and fishing, or riding my motorcycle across the hills.

Name: Vincent Büscher

Age: 26

Location: Emden, Germany

Apprenticeship: electronics engineer for automation technology

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would buy all employees a free currywurst, or for 
those who are more health-conscious, a salad.

Is there anything that worries you about the future?

Oh yes, the diesel issue worries me of course, but so does fear-mongering in society.
General injustice in society concerns me too.


Name: Vivienne Schmidt
Age: 20
Location: Zwickau, Germany
Apprenticeship: process mechanic for coating technology

Do you have plans for the future?

My goal is not to stay standing still but to keep moving forward. I’m excited to see what the future holds.

Which song is currently at the top of your playlist?

The song “For You” by Liam Payne and Rita Ora. The lyrics simply speak to me personally
and remind me of wonderful memories.

Name: Alexander Peters
Age: 22
Location: Osnabrück, Germany
Apprenticeship: electronics engineer for automation technology

Do you have any plans for after you finish your apprenticeship?

At the moment I’m completing a second apprenticeship as an electronics engineer for information and system technology at Volkswagen Osnabrück. I’m also training to be a technician at a night school. Ultimately I’d like to work in information technology at our site.

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

A feeling of security is important to me. At some point I’d like to own a house and have a family – very traditional.

What is currently your favorite model by our brand? Why is that?

The Golf R! A really sporty car that also looks great – I’d happily have one.

Name: Kevin Zöllner
Age: 24
Location: Salzgitter, Germany
Apprenticeship: cutting machine operator

Is there anything that worries you about the future?

The hype about electric cars, which people are fixated on, so good alternatives are going unnoticed.

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

I would like to play an active part in developing models, but potentially also in the direction of Volkswagen. However, it’s more likely that I’ll be able to leave my mark on certain small components.

How do you spend your free time?

I ride through the Harz mountains on my mountain bike or play video games.

Name: Madeline Hapka
Age: 24
Location: Braunschweig, Germany
Apprenticeship: office manager

Why did you choose this apprenticeship?

For me, it was important to do an apprenticeship before studying, to gain some practical experience. And Volkswagen was a natural choice since I’ve often been told it’s like hitting the jackpot.

Do you remember your first day working for Volkswagen?

Yes, and my instructors must certainly remember it as well. On the very first day, I asked if I could cut my apprenticeship down to two years. Maybe I should have waited a day...

Is there anything that worries you about the future?

Socio-politically, I’m concerned that in many countries nationalist thinking will strengthen and gain more support.

Name: Alexander Rein
Age: 25
Location: Kassel, Germany
Apprenticeship: electronics engineer for automation technology

Do you remember your first day working for Volkswagen?

Yes, very well actually. That day I set two alarms and got there really early. I was completely taken aback by the size of the place, just the sight of our north block was impressive. Any initial nerves were quickly left behind when we got to know our instructors.

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

I would love to work as an engineer at Volkswagen. My biggest dream is to become an instructor at the academy. It would be a lot of fun to work with young people, motivate them, share that spirit, and pass on my knowledge. Being an apprentice was a special time. It helps shape your working life later on.

Which song is currently at the top of your playlist?

I’m a 90s kid. Nickleback is my go-to!

Name: Robin Wolf
Age: 19
Location: Chemnitz, Germany
Apprenticeship: cutting machine operator

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

In my personal life I’d love to travel the world and have enough time for my family.
Professionally, I would like to have worked in several areas and be able to help shape Volkswagen with my experience, knowledge, and commitment, making important decisions for Volkswagen and its employees.

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would try to improve communication between the different hierarchical levels. I’d also like to focus more on the needs of the employees and appreciate them more as individuals.

How do you spend your free time?

I spend a lot of time with my girlfriend, friends, and family, I like to play around with engines, and I enjoy the pleasure of driving anything with two or four wheels. I am also an active member of the volunteer fire department and team captain of a table tennis team, and of course play myself.


Name: Saajid Hoosen
Age: 25
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa

Apprenticeship: pricing specialist

Do you still remember your first day at Volkswagen?

I was impressed by the size of the company. You only realize how much work goes into 
our vehicles when you have seen it with your own eyes.

What is your favorite model?

Definitely the Golf. There is something special about that car. It feels as though every Golf has its own personality.

Name: Christoph Meinecke
Age: 22
Location: Wolfsburg, Germany

Apprenticeship: industrial mechanic

Is there anything that worries you about the future?

The exploitation of nature.

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would look at as many production processes as possible on site and look for possible improvements.

What is currently your favorite model by our brand?

The new Arteon because it’s sporty and elegant.

Name: Grzegorz Nieroda
Age: 20
Location: Polkowice, Poland

Apprenticeship: mechatronics engineer

Do you remember your first day working for Volkswagen?

Of course! No one forgets their first day. I was really stressed, but also happy at the same time that I was finally part of the Volkswagen team. My colleagues were really nice and warmly welcomed me to their team.

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

I would like to develop my skills for plant programming and would like to take over responsibility for monitoring the software used in the production process.

What is currently your favorite model by our brand?

The Tiguan Allspace is a real eye-catcher – thanks to its design, it really stands out from every other car. It is full of technological innovations and is very practical. You can take the car through rough terrain, which is ideal for me as someone who likes to go fishing.

Name: Adam Bartalský
Age: 26
Location: Bratislava, Slovakia
Apprenticeship: industrial mechanic

Why did you choose this apprenticeship?

Even as a child I was interested in technology. I would take apart anything I could to find out how it worked. That’s why this apprenticeship was my first choice.

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

I want to take part in interesting tasks that are useful and change things for the better. Most of all, I’d like to work with inspiring people. I always want to be working toward that. As for my personal life, I would like to have a healthy, happy family.

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would strongly support the opportunity to send colleagues to other Group plants. Continuing training for employees outside of the work place would also be on my agenda. And in each plant I would build an “Autostadt” like in Wolfsburg.


Name: 
Anton Lysenko
Age: 24

Location: 
Kaluga, Russia

Apprenticeship: 
mechatronics engineer

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would organize an “opposites day.” Employees in direct and indirect proximity would change places for a day to get a feel for their colleagues’ work.

How do you spend your free time?

I’ve always been interested in cars and computers, ever since I was little. Now I get to realize my passion for cars at work, and at home I am happy if I can improve my computer and help my friends.

Name: Sagar Salunke
Age: 21
Location: Pune, India

Apprenticeship: mechatronics engineer

Why did you decide to do an apprenticeship at Volkswagen?

I read an article about Volkswagen’s apprenticeship program in the local newspaper and I applied. I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to 
learn about automation in theory and in practice.

Is there anything that worries you about the future?

Sometimes I worry that one day I will get stuck in a comfort zone where I stop learning.


Name: Jicai Jia
Age: 26
Location: Changchun, China

Apprenticeship: electronics engineer for automation technology

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would spend a day with the employees in Production and get them to tell me all about their challenges and ideas.

What is currently your favorite model 
by our brand?

The Golf Sportsvan1. Because of how spacious it is – and because I drive one myself.

Name: Ming Jie Yang
Age: 22
Location: Ningbo, China
Apprenticeship: electronics engineer for the automation phase

Imagine you were the CEO of Volkswagen – and had free rein for a day. What would you do?

I would place more importance on the Chinese market. For Chinese customers, Volkswagen is a brand that takes responsibility.

How do you spend your free time?

I enjoy reading car magazines and I’m a fan of the TV show “Ultimate Factories.”

Where would you like to be 20 years? What is your dream?

I hope I can excel in my job. On the one hand, I want to be able to work independently, and on the other, I want to be a good team member who shares his knowledge and experience.