Central Piedmont student and Siemens apprentice Chad Robinson selected to participate in the prestigious CBYX program

last modified Apr 09, 2019 08:39 AM

Central Piedmont Community College student Chad Robinson of Charlotte, N.C., has been selected to participateChad Robinsonin the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals (CBYX), a year-long, federally-funded fellowship for study and work in Germany. Robinson is one of only 75 American participants, from a pool of more than 550 applicants, to be chosen for the program.Robinson is also a part of Siemens’ apprenticeship program at its Charlotte Energy Hub, an initiative created in partnership with Central Piedmont.

While studying abroad in Germany during the 2019-2020 academic year, Robinson will attend a two-month intensive German language course, study at a German university or professional school for four months and complete a five-month internship with a German company in his career field. These combined experiences will provide Robinson with an opportunity to learn about everyday German life from a variety of perspectives.

“I am honored to be selected for this program and look forward to being fully immersed in German culture,”said Robinson who is pursuing an associate in applied science degree in mechatronics and has studied the German language for two semesters at Central Piedmont. “This experience will open doors for my career I never knew were possible. It will give me a new perspective on culture, improve my language skills and provide me with a great education. I am honored to be representing both my community and my country on this year-long journey.”

In 2017, Robinson joined Siemens AG CEO Joe Kaeser and German Chancellor Angela Merkel for a White House meeting with President Donald Trump to discuss the apprenticeship model and his experience with the program in Charlotte. He also received a scholarship through Central Piedmont’s “Study and Work Abroad – Experience the German Workplace as an Apprentice!” program in 2016. The experience sent him overseas to Germany where he worked in the company’s Muehlheim training facility, honing his machining skills. He hopes that returning to Germany this year will help him gain the additional skills and knowledge he needs to continue his career at Siemens Energy and pursue a mechanical engineering degree at UNC Charlotte in the future.

“Chad has been an integral part of our apprenticeship program for the past four years, and we’re thrilled he has the opportunity to continue his education with the CBYX fellowship,” said Kevin Poet, head of operations at Siemens Charlotte Energy Hub. “His experience is a strong example of the impact we hope to have with our apprenticeship model here in the U.S., and we wish Chad luck as he embarks on this next chapter.”

Siemens’ apprenticeship program in Charlotte is one of 10 such initiatives across nine states. The advanced manufacturing training program provides three times more on-the-job training and more than 10 times more college hours than is typically required by programs registered through the U.S. Department of Labor. Apprentices have tuition costs covered for technical education at a community college, are paid while they learn on the job, and graduate from the program with a degree, international certification and a guaranteed job with Siemens.

This year marks the 36th anniversary of the CBYX program, supported financially by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State under the authority of the Fulbright-Hays Act.

To qualify as a CBYX applicant, individuals must be a young adult in the business, technical, engineering, vocational or agricultural fields; be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident between 18 and 24 years of age; and have clear career goals and experience in their professional field. To learn more about the CBYX program visit https://cbyx.info.

To learn more about Central Piedmont’s German courses, click here. For information on the college’s study abroad program, visit www.cpcc.edu/study-abroad/programs.