/
Insight

Automotive Taking a Page Out of Aeronautics Book

Tue, 09/01/2015 - 15:37

The automotive industry continues to be crucial to the Mexican economy, contributing considerably to the balance of trade. Private companies and public authorities alike are responding to this reality, realizing that the investment buck should not stop at manufacturing and assembly facilities, infrastructure, and automation, but should also be directed toward human capital, which is crucial for retaining the growth of these segments. From technicians to truck drivers, plant managers to engineers, all of those working within the sector require specific training courses for their trade, but not all of these courses are readily available, nor directed specifically toward the needs of the industry. The state of Queretaro is responding to this call to action with the country’s first automotive university, set to begin operating in September 2015.

The governor of the state of Queretaro, Jose Eduardo Calzada Rovirosa, has mentioned in recent interviews that the polytechnic university will adapt to the industry’s needs once classes begin, following in the footsteps of the Aeronautics University of Queretaro (UNAQ). The automotive university will cover a range of specialties AUTOMOTIVE TAKING A PAGE OUT OF AERONAUTICS BOOK focusing on finishes, design, material resistance, comfort, and other specialties required by the industry. The courses will be implemented according to demand for labor and to the interests of prospective students, but with the flexibility to adjust them as required. The Automotive Cluster in Queretaro and the Ministry of Education (SEP) has been working to develop programs for each discipline, to attract students from an earlier stage by displaying the benefits of working in the automotive industry. The cluster has launched an information campaign explaining the various academic disciplines and programs currently demanded in the labor market.

The university will have the capacity to teach 1,000 students at a time and will be located on approximately one acre of land in the municipality of El Marques, which neighbors the capital city of Queretaro. Designed with eight laboratories and 16 classrooms, the university will open with an inaugural class of between 30 and 50 students during its first phase, at a cost of MX$30 million (US$2 million). As a result of this exciting development, new businesses arising from the institute should contribute positively to local employment possibilities.