April 26 is Girls’ Day in Germany: a joint initiative set up in 2001 by the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs, the Federal Education Ministry, the European Social Fund and the European Union. As the father of three girls, I love the idea.
Porsche is continuing its long-standing support of the occasion with a series of workshops, allowing seventy schoolgirls to experience traditionally male roles in vehicle development and production at Porsche’s training centres in Zuffenhausen, Weissach, Leipzig and at Porsche Engineering Services.
“The focus is on absolutely down-to-earth car-related work. We want to alert the girls to a wide range of occupations, arouse their interest in technical trades and fire their enthusiasm for the Porsche brand,” says Thomas Edig, a Porsche HR commander. “While the proportion of female Porsche employees in industrial and technical occupations has increased slightly in recent years, we have to make an even greater effort for equality of opportunity between women and men.”
The schoolgirls will be working in small groups in the vehicle painting, electronics and mechatronics areas, disassembling engines and finding out about CAD designs or developing car seats. At the Leipzig site, a guided tour through the production hall and customer centre has been laid on. Inevitably the day will end with questions on how the kids can land a job doing this full-time.
“To work for Porsche is what many youngsters dream about. Anyone who can offer commitment, shows interest and has good grades at school has every chance – be they a boy or a girl. Because occupations are gender neutral,” explains Thomas Edig. I guess it might also help to live less than 700 miles from Stuttgart – sorry, fellow UK kids.