Luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz India has tied up with Maharshi Karve Stree Shikshan Samstha (MKSSS), an all-women’s college in Pune, to initiate an automotive mechatronics course. This is Mercedes-Benz’s first ever tie-up with a women’s college in India as a part of its CSR initiative and in line with its contributory effort to the ‘Skill India’ initiative to develop highly skilled resources for the automotive industry.
The Advanced Diploma in Automotive Mechatronics (ADAM) program by Mercedes-Benz is conducted in collaboration with the government and private educational institutions and now with an all-women college.
The MoU was signed between Mercedes-Benz India at Cummins College Campus, Karvenagar in Pune in the presence of Santosh Iyer, vice-president - Customer Service and Corporate Affairs, Mercedes-Benz India; Smita Ghaisas, president, MKSSS and Dr PVS Shastry, secretary of MKSSS, on August 13.
Maharshi Karve Stree Shikshan Samstha, Pune was established in 1896 by the great visionary and social worker Bharat Ratna Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve to provide education and shelter to widows and girls. The Samstha has been working on charities since then with the objectives of upliftment, emancipation and education of women. The majority of the students approaching the institution for education belong to the rural areas and financially weaker sections of the society.
The ADAM course aims to fulfil the requirement for superlative service in the automotive sector. This course, conducted since 2006 in government institutions in Pune, Aurangabad and Thiruvananthapuram, has effectively trained a total of 540 students across these locations. Only 20 students who qualify will be eligible to take the course every year. Successful and aspiring women candidates can carve a successful career in automotive industry, by not only becoming trained technicians but also customer service consultants interacting with customers.
Santosh Iyer, vice-president - Customer Service & Corporate Affairs, Mercedes-Benz India, said: “Back in 2005, Mercedes-Benz was one of the first companies to make diversity management a key part of the corporate strategy. In continuation of that strategy, we are extremely proud of our collaboration with an all-women’s college in India. Mercedes-Benz is extending its commitment to promote diversity and open the doors of automotive mechatronics for women aspirants. Recently we launched the ‘She’s Mercedes’ global initiative by Mercedes-Benz to recognise and celebrate the accomplishments of women in all walks of life. We want to break the stereotype associated with women in this sector and want more women to join the workforce.”
Iyer further elaborated, “With this initiative, we want to encourage, empower and equip aspiring women candidates to independently choose a career in the automobile industry. Initiatives like these will provide an appropriate platform to aspiring women to gear up for a bright career in the automotive industry. The percentage of women in this industry is low right now, but we believe it has immense potential to have more inclusion from women work force in the foreseeable future. The Mercedes-Benz Mechatronic course is a significantly advanced and industry oriented course aligned with the latest technological advancement in the domain of automotive engineering. With an all-women mechatronics course, we are now confident that more women candidates would actively seek to hone their skillsets and decide to join the automotive industry. At Mercedes-Benz, we are witnessing an increase in the number of women customers as well in our portfolio. In fact, 10-12 percent of our annual sales come from women and it is an increasing trend.”
Dr. PVS Shastry, Secretary of MKSSS, commented, “Tie-up with an iconic brand like Mercedes-Benz is a matter of pride for us. Women students today want to explore industries which were earlier considered male dominant. Platforms like these provide an opportunity to the women who are keen on making a career in this automotive industry. The rigorous training and quality of education will ensure our students have a bright career in the industry and also help break the current stereotype in the automobile industry.”
What is ADAM?
The Advanced Diploma in Automotive Mechatronics (ADAM) program is Mercedes-Benz India’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiative propagated among students with the help of educational institutions.
The Mechatronics training school at Mercedes-Benz India began in 2002 with the aim of providing trained service personnel and engineers. To address this requirement, the parent company Daimler AG, Germany along with Mercedes-Benz India and the Mercedes-Benz India dealership network joined hands to start the program and train students to address the requirements of Mercedes-Benz technology and innovation.
The Mercedes-Benz network is the largest among all luxury automotive manufacturers in India, spread over 45 cities and 93 outlets. The Mechatronics program also provides support to Mercedes-Benz India’s state-of-the-art operations at Chakan, Pune.
The total Investment for ADAM course across all institutions through CSR is Rs 5.5 crore including cars given to the institutes.
The ADAM course will be offered under the Mechatronics Discipline in Cummins College of Engineering for women. The initial plan is to start the course with a single batch of 20 students and the selection of candidates will be strictly as per merit via an entrance test conducted by the college under the supervision of Mercedes-Benz. Engineering Degree/Diploma holders are eligible to appear for the entrance test. Certificates for the successful students will be jointly issued by the authorities of the college and the company.