Students at the CMPC – Duoc UC Nacimiento campus begin their training program at the company’s plants in Chile

The beginning of this second semester is seen as a benchmark for the 43 students at this educational institution in the Biobío Region in south-central Chile. This is because they are the first cohort of students to have classes inside the CMPC plants under the framework of the start of the dual training program led by the educational institution and the company.

With the aim of bringing more options for education closer to the people of the Biobío Region in south-central Chile and after months of planning and inductions, the dual training program developed by Campus Nacimiento CMPC Duoc UC and CMPC was kicked off this week.

The beginning of the 72 hours of hands-on workshops for 43 students in the second semester of studies of Electrical and Industrial Automation Technician and Electro-mechanical Maintenance Technician degree programs began with welcome activities in the Santa Fe and Laja plants in the Biobío Region and the Pacific plant in the Araucanía Region, which were specially designed to receive students.

Starting August 22 students will be separated into four groups to complete the hands-on portion of their education in coordination with each of the plants until the end of the year. During the process they’ll be under the supervision and guidance of 32 employees from CMPC’s maintenance department who were trained to voluntarily fill the role of tutors during the course of the program.   Likewise, the tutors will also have the support of 25 master guides who will be responsible for providing continuity to the training process.

This is so that students CMPC – Duoc UC Nacimiento campus can graduate and go out to the job market with the advantage of having been able to complement the theory learned in the classroom with what they learn through practical work in the field alongside trained staff in facilities specially equipped for this purpose.

The students assess this opportunity as a positive one. Diego Troncoso, a student in the electro-mechanical maintenance technician program appreciated the welcome that the CMPC employees gave him and his classmates on their first visit to the plants. Troncoso added that what he expects from the tutors “is to acquire their knowledge and skills and meet more people who can discuss their work experiences, since practical activities are a good way to learn more and ultimately have a better future.”

Additionally, Patricio Vergara, another student in the electro-mechanical maintenance technician program described the dual training as “a good experience, because you learn more being in the same department where you’ll get to work in future years. We get to feed on the knowledge of our tutors. They’ve been here for years and can teach us a lot of things that we don’t know yet.” This was backed up by tutor and mechanic at the Santa Fe plant, Jorge Salazar, who said, “There are so many of us tutors with different specialties that are excited to teach students what we know. You can see that they’re very enthusiastic and really excited to start using and operating the work equipment.” Likewise, Salazar said, “Our expectations are huge because as the young people learn, we’re going to feel enriched by that. The most fundamental, primary objective is that they learn what we as tutors are going to teach them.”

Head of Corporate Affairs for CMPC Nacimiento Cristian Coutiño said that the company has “high expectations of being able to contribute to people’s development in this area. Students can not only expect a lot of understanding and a welcoming attitude from their tutors, but also a lot of practical experience that will strengthen the skills they’ll develop as future professionals.  We want to transfer the more than 100 years of experience that CMPC has in Chile to the new generations so that they can contribute to the development of the territory, the Biobío Region and the province in particular.”

For her part from Duoc UC, Camila Erices co-director of the CMPC – Duoc UC Nacimiento campus said that the educational institution hopes that in “this process of tutors providing them support will help students get better prepared to enter the job market at the end of this dual training, putting into practice everything they’ve learned in the classroom. We hope that bonds of trust are generated between them, since students see their tutors as guides and an important part of their dual training from the beginning to the end of their course of study.”

The study program for this first generation of students studying the Electrical and Industrial Automation Technician and Electro-mechanical Maintenance Technician degree programs states that the dual training program and the respective practical activities that will take place at the CMPC plants will be taught in three workshops during the second, third and fourth semester of both courses of study.

CMPC – Duoc UC Nacimiento campus

With the aim of creating a new pole of knowledge in southern Chile and continuing to position the dual training model of technical-professional education, CMPC and Duoc UC joined forces to create this new educational center and provide university opportunities to more than 200 young people who can study without having to move to distant cities.

More than 3,500 square meters of facilities, rooms with the latest technology, an amphitheater, a multi-court complex, cafeteria, library and large green areas give shape to the new CMPC Duoc UC Campus of Nacimiento. The educational institution inaugurated April 2023 will give thousands of people in the district and surrounding areas access to a professional technical education via its seven degree programs on offer.

Young people and adults will be able to start or continue their studies in one of the most recognized educational institutions in the country, thanks to the dual education system, putting their knowledge into practice at one of the largest forestry companies in the world, CMPC.