10 students have today graduated from the Nairobi Bottlers Limited (NBL) Center of Excellence having acquired technical vocational skills through an innovative apprentice curriculum for mechatronics technicians aimed at raising the standards of engineering training in Kenya.
The programme that was launched in 2013 by NBL, a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA), has worked to help close important basic skills gaps within the company’s engineering workforce and created a sustainable pipeline of resources and talent to cater for the rising need for technical skill within the business.
“This programme aims to improve the standards of technical vocational resource capacity in the country so that we can have a rich base of qualified trained engineers to help develop the industry with technical skills required to propel the country towards the realisation of Vision 2030,” said Daryl Wilson, Managing Director of NBL.
In January 2015, NBL partnered with Krones (equipment manufacturer) and Centurion Systems (training solutions provider) to develop the Centre of Excellence for the Food and Beverage Industry, from which the students are currently graduating.
While speaking at the graduation ceremony, Krones Head of Training Department Mr. Henning Post said “Krones absorbed four out of the ten trainees from the current cohort. The apprenticeship program gives us people with better hands-on experience, and it’s amazing how fast they learn and develop their skills. We are very proud of the group for finishing with a class average of 86%.”
The programme is certified by AHK and the National Industrial Training Authority (NITA) trade test and consists of a two year apprentice programme in mechatronics at a Master technician level in which Diploma holders from TVET institutions are admitted.
It is modeled alongside the South African and German technical training system hence creating a world-class skills development entity.