Technical education with job guarantee: Higher technical college HTL Kapfenberg boosts cooperation with regional members of advisory board

Press information: Published on in Company, Locations

BBG Baugeräte, Heidenbauer, KNAPP Systemintegration, Pankl Racing Systems and voestalpine Böhler Edelstahl launch a practical initiative – intensive cooperation with the colleges for mechanical engineering and mechatronics at HTL Kapfenberg. True to their motto, “Education with job guarantee”, young people meet with the companies in the region during their education, not only to gain experience while at school, but with the chance to complete their education with a great job in their pocket.

Practical education from the first day of school

The HTL is a technical college for applied sciences with programs in mechanical engineering and mechatronics. The college to put an even a stronger emphasis on practical experience and learning. As part of this endeavor, starting with the 2022/2023 term, five companies in the region will be working with the college to align the students’ education more closely with the requirements of these companies. During their three years of education, the students will work as interns to not only get their first work experiences, but also receive a secure job offer.
The goal of this pilot project is to create a practical network for cooperation between the technical college and the companies, with students taking their first career steps even before they finish their programs.

What’s in it for students at the HTL Kapfenberg?

The cooperation between the technical college and the regional companies allows young people to tap into the daily grind of these companies and gain high-quality practical experience as part of their program. Connecting companies with students early on in their education means that the talents and interests of the future technical workforce can also be recognized early on and promoted. Having an “education with job guarantee” combined with the right performance gives these technical students a chance to start working for the company immediately upon graduation. This initiative offers young people a smooth transition from the classroom to career.

What’s new at the technical college?

In the first year of their program, all students in the mechanical engineering and mechatronics programs are introduced to the companies. This includes tours of the companies with interactive elements showing the students what work is like in the different companies.
At the end of the first year of their program, the students are assigned to the individual companies. Each student can apply for an internship at a preferred employer that matches their focus. The students receive training for and complete the entire application process, from the cover letter, to the resume and, of course, the job interview.
After their third year in college, students must complete a mandatory internship at the company of their choice. If the students perform well in the internship, they will be offered a job at the company.

Working together to tackle the shortage of qualified personnel

Upper Styria is home to many international and highly specialized companies that have one important goal in common: the continued expansion of their Upper Styrian locations.  This is exactly where specialized personnel are needed. The cooperation with educational institutes results in highly trained graduates, who will contribute to strong growth in the region.

These Upper Styrian cooperation partners are on board

BBG Baugeräte GmbH

BBG Baugeräte GmbH is an internationally successful group of companies headquartered in Kapfenberg, Austria. The BBG Group specializes in products for the construction and quarry industries, the blast furnace and steel mill industries, and underground mining. With about 70 employees, the company develops, produces and sells the BBG low-vibration and noise-reduced pneumatic hammers in various weight classes. Their product portfolio also includes pneumatic and hydraulic tap hole rotary hammer drills for blast furnaces and non-ferrous-metal blast furnaces and taphole breaking out devices for electric furnaces and steel converters as well as special solutions for the mining industry.

“The cooperation between the technical college and BBG has proven to be successful for years. Graduates are working successfully in various areas of the company. This intensified cooperation results in a win-win-win situation for all participants, the college, the company and the students,” Richard Treutler, Executive Assistant, BBG.


The Heidenbauer Group covers all trades of the metal construction industry, including roofing and bituminous surfacing. It is comprised of 5 divisions: steel, aluminum, stainless steel, metal construction and roofs and facades.

“The advantages of the collaboration are that the technical college students are offered not only the chance to gain valuable and practical experience, they are also paid for it. The companies have talented company interns at their disposal who, during their education, become familiar with the requirements of the industry or future employers early on. The technical college is an extremely interesting education model with a guaranteed job in the field of focus,” Christian Kindelsberger, Project Manager at Heidenbauer.

KNAPP Systemintegration 

KNAPP Systemintegration GmbH in Leoben is the largest subsidiary of the KNAPP group. Currently with around 680 employees, the Upper Austrian team plans, develops and implements solutions in software and automation. The solution portfolio comprises innovative, tailor-made automation concepts for both online and brick and mortar food retail. Household names such as SPAR, REWE, Kroger or Woolworths are some of their customers. The company also develops highly automated systems for international corporations such as Würth.

“Through the advisory board of the HTL Kapfenberg, we would like to emphasize together with the partner companies how important a technical college education is, and offer interested young people an exciting and secure future in the leading companies in Upper Styria. We have maintained a strong partnership with the HTL for years and are pleased that we are currently able to employ many graduates in our company. The quality of the education and the commitment of the graduates makes us want to invest in these young people” Christian Becskei, Head of Human Resources at KNAPP Systemintegration GmbH.

Pankl Racing Systems AG

Pankl Racing Systems, headquartered in Upper Styria, develops, manufactures, maintains and distributes mechanical systems in the high-tech field for dynamic components in the global niche markets motor racing, luxury and high-performance cars and aerospace. With roughly 1,400 employees, the company works on the complex mobility solutions of the future.

“Pankl has been working with the technical college for many years and we know the level of education is where it needs to be. Ramping up the cooperation will provide a great advantage for the graduates: After their education is completed, they have not only a degree in their hand but also sound, practical professional experience and a guaranteed job at a leading company in the region. On the flip side, in addition to apprenticeship training, we would like to start with practical training at an early stage during the education program and play a leading role when it comes to counteracting the shortage of qualified personnel,” Harald Egger, Head of Human Resources, Pankl Racing Systems AG.

Voestalpine Böhler Edelstahl

The voestalpine is a leading global steel and technology group with business segments comprising a combination of material and processing expertise. They are represented by 500 group companies and locations in more than 50 countries on five continents. Offering top-quality products and system solutions, they are a leading partner of the automotive and consumer goods industries as well as of the aerospace and oil and natural gas industries and are the world market leader in railway systems, tool steel, and special profiles.

“By making the technical college more attractive to the outside world and strengthening its practical relevance by cooperating with partners in industry, our region has an opportunity to train young people to become competent engineers right at our doorstep. This will help secure the economic power in our region for the long term. Companies, communities and educational institutes need to all work together to attract young people to our region and provide them a reason to stay.  Projects like this one with the HTL Kapfenberg make a big difference,” Kurt Weidhofer, voestalpine Böhler Edelstahl.

Press contact KNAPP Systemintegration GmbH

Christina Trummer 
Waltenbachstraße 9
8700 Leoben | Austria
Tel.: +43 5 04953 6455

Press contact Pankl Racing Systems AG

Ana Cukic
Employer Branding – Social Media
Industriestraße West 4
A-8605 Kapfenberg | Austria
Tel.: +43 676 92 93 164