The exchange between the occupational fields is part of the fixed training programme. Julia Fritschi and Samira Teuber discuss the construction sketches at the training centre in Rapperswil-Jona. (Copyright: Ben Huggler)
Employees - December 2023

Maths in a practical test

Women in technical professions

Occupational fields such as plastics technology, construction or polymechanics traditionally interest more men. Geberit promotes interest in technical professions among young women and men alike.

“Why do I need maths?“ Many pupils groan when the next maths lesson is due at school – and ask themselves: what are these formulas, this wretched arithmetic, good for?

Calculating in everyday life
Rafael Anner, vocational instructor for design engineers, has a good answer to this – and is happy to demonstrate it directly at Geberit. He and the team of vocational trainers in Rapperswil-Jona have been working together with surrounding schools for about seven years. Around 130 schoolchildren visit the Geberit site in Rapperswil-Jona every year. During the tour of the plant, Rafael Anner sets them various tasks. For example, they have to calculate the number of pallets that can fit in a trailer. “Especially with abstract subjects like maths, the practical relevance is particularly valuable.“

He is particularly pleased about the interest of girls and young women in technology. “Few women are interested in professional fields such as plastics technology, construction or polymechanics. Yet there is no reason why they could not pursue these professions.“

Exciting product development
Julia Fritschi and Samira Teuber share this opinion. Julia Fritschi has just completed her apprenticeship as a design engineer and works in the Product Engineering team at the Rapperswil-Jona site. “I was good at maths and drawing and was looking for a career field where both are needed.“ She could also have aimed for an apprenticeship as a structural draughtswoman, but: “Product development encompasses an entire project, from the first draft to modelling to market launch. Different skills are needed. It remains exciting throughout the whole process.“

Copyright: Ben Huggler
"Product development encompasses an entire project. It remains exciting throughout the whole process."
Julia Fritschi, design engineer (CH)

From moped to CNC milling machine
Meanwhile, Samira Teuber is halfway to completing her apprenticeship. For a long time, the polymechanics apprentice didn't know which training path to take. During the Corona pandemic, she regularly worked on her moped – and liked it. However, she didn't want to become a car mechanic: “I was looking for a profession that offered many possible applications. After a few trial days at Geberit, the answer was clear: polymechanics. “The profession suits me.“ There is no doubt about that: last June, Samira Teuber won 2nd place in a competition for young talent in metalworking.

Copyright: Ben Huggler
"I was looking for a profession that offers many application possibilities."
Samira Teuber, polymechanics apprentice (CH)

For young women and men
Both women agree that enjoyment of mathematics and technology are important prerequisites for interest in technical professions. However, company tours and demonstrations of practical relevance help to break down inhibitions. “We offer attractive apprenticeships for young women and men alike,“ Rafael Anner sums up.