Wanzl Kirchheim invites guests to the Swabian Chamber of Commerce and Industry's 400th school partnership

Celebration to mark the start of the partnership between Wanzl and the high school Realschule Thannhausen

The project “School + Businesses = School Partnership” run by the Swabian Chamber of Commerce and Industry is dedicated to addressing the shortage of skilled workers by establishing close links between schools and businesses. To mark the 400th school partnership, which was launched under the guidance of the Swabian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Wanzl invited guests to its production site in Kirchheim in the Swabian region of Germany on May 7 to celebrate the signing of the document. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry achieved this impressive figure with Wanzl’s latest school partnership with Christoph-von-Schmid-Schule Staatliche Realschule Thannhausen, a high school in Bavaria, Germany. The family-run business from the Bavarian-Swabian region entered into a cross-district partnership to support young people with seven other schools from the Kirchheim region.

Since 2014, the Swabian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has been facilitating school partnerships to provide students with career guidance and help companies in their search for the specialists of tomorrow. Within 10 years, 400 school partnerships have been successfully formed in the region of Bavarian Swabia. “In a time when there is a shortage of skilled workers, innovative companies in the region – like Wanzl – are establishing initial contact with potential applicants through school partnerships. The young people, on the other hand, get a realistic insight into business practice. By facilitating, developing and maintaining these partnerships, both companies and schools benefit – a win-win situation for everyone,” says Wolfgang Haschner, Head of Vocational Education at the Swabian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, explaining the project.

To mark the milestone partnership between Wanzl and Christoph-von-Schmid-Schule Staatliche Realschule Thannhausen, representatives from Wanzl, the Swabian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Realschule Thannhausen high school and politicians gathered at the Wanzl plant in Kirchheim on May 7. Among the high-ranking political guests were Dr. Hans Reichart, chief administrative officer of the district of Günzburg, Michael Helfert, deputy administrative officer of the district of Unterallgäu, and Susanne Fischer, first mayoress of the market town of Kirchheim in Swabia, as well as Christoph Schmid, member of the German Federal Parliament for the Danube-Ries electoral district: “I am delighted to be here to mark the establishment of the 400th school partnership. This partnership between Wanzl and Realschule Thannhausen is a milestone and proof of the commitment of both educational institutions and businesses in our region in promoting the training and professional development of our young people.”

Around 600 people work at Wanzl’s second-largest location in Kirchheim, Swabia. Wanzl’s specialists perform high-precision work in state-of-the-art production and quality processes. They make a decisive contribution to Wanzl's evolution into a global innovation leader for solutions in retail and in the business sectors of intralogistics, access systems, airports and hotels. “We attach great importance to the development of our specialists and up-and-coming talent. By expanding our school partnerships, we are thinking about the long-term future of Wanzl. We are not only increasing our visibility in the region, but also engaging in direct contact with students in order to showcase our diverse range of training courses during company internships and visits to schools,” explains Frank Oppenländer, Senior Vice President HR at Wanzl. At the training centre in Kirchheim, young people from the region have the opportunity to learn their trade in one of five challenging and future-oriented professions at Wanzl: Electronics engineers for industrial engineering, machine and plant operators, precision and industrial mechanics as well as mechatronics engineers and warehouse logistics specialists.

Cooperation with Wanzl is also an important step for Realschule Thannhausen. “We are very pleased about the partnership with Wanzl, which enables us to further promote the professional development of our students. This collaboration provides real-life insight into the world of work and potential apprenticeships,” says Peter Volkert, deputy headteacher of Realschule Thannhausen, adding: “We believe that close links between educational institutions and the business world are crucial to best prepare young people for the demands of today's job market.”