Volkswagen Magazine


Mastering the art

Volkswagen is proud of its rigorous technical training qualification program and is always happy to celebrate those who succeed.

Words Paul Rodger
Photography Peter Collie

As the range of Volkswagen vehicles expands and the technology incorporated in each vehicle becomes more complex, greater demands are placed on technicians to stay abreast of new developments.

That’s where the Volkswagen Academy comes in. It offers a state-of-the-art training program that teaches technicians the specialist knowledge and skills they need to repair Volkswagen vehicles.

A rigorous training pathway takes technicians from apprentice to expert level. So when a technician passes each of the modules with flying colours and earns the commendations of everyone she works with, that success deserves to be shouted about.

Lara Gibson is the latest technician to blaze a trail through the Volkswagen Academy’s Technical Training Qualification Pathway. She won the ‘Volkswagen 1st Year Apprentice of the Year’ award in 2012 and was in the running for the ‘Apprentice of the Year’ award again during her third year of training. She is now just a couple of competencies short of achieving the qualification of Master Technician, the highest qualification offered.

It will be a fitting acknowledgement for a technician whose work ethic has impressed all at the Academy.

According to Kieren Gradidge, Technical Training Manager at Volkswagen, Lara has demonstrated an exceptionally high level of skill from day one. “Not only has she more than held her own in the technical training environment in a practical and theoretical sense, she has been a great ambassador for the dealership and for the Volkswagen brand.

» The most appealing part about the trade is that it is constantly evolving, and you will never stop learning. «

“The long and short of it is that she has kicked some big goals.”

Lara was employed by Wodonga Prestige in northeast Victoria while she was undertaking her training and now works at the South Yarra service centre in Melbourne.

She says the apprentice program plays a key role in imparting vehicle-specific knowledge to technicians, who can then take the information they have learned back to the workplace. Completing the Master Technician training program will position her well for the role she aspires to—foreman/workshop controller.

“The most appealing part about the trade is that it is constantly evolving, and you will never stop learning,” Lara says. “A willingness to learn, both on the job and during technical training, is the hallmark of an excellent Volkswagen technician. “The more you learn, the better technician you will be.”