How my engineering scholarship is changing my life

Image courtesy of Engelberg-Titlis Tourismus AG

Diana Bravo is coming to Switzerland from Mexico, embarking on a journey of a lifetime as part of her efforts to fulfil an engineering dream.

Diana, a student at the faculty of Systems Engineering and Industrial Technologies at the Polytechnic University of San Luis Potosi, is among more than 30 international scholars of the ABB Jürgen Dormann Foundation for Engineering Education who will soon arrive in Switzerland for a week of learning, lectures, factory tours and tourism.

Her scholarship, determination and hopes for the future are part of her luggage. Watch her remarkable video diary from her hometown in Mexico where she explains what the foundation scholarship means to her and her family.

Along with her fellow scholars, Diana will be in Switzerland from August 19-25 for a packed week in which they will work together in cross-cultural groups on technical projects, visit ABB factories and the research and development center in Dättwil, attend presentations by senior ABB executives and meet global and Swiss trainees working for ABB.

The week – which is held every two years – culminates in tourist visits to some of Switzerland’s best known sites including Mount Titlis.

For most of the students it will be the first time out of their home country – in some cases, the first time they have ever flown.

The scholarships, which are designed for talented but financially needy students, are awarded for a maximum of five years of study. Every student scholar gets to attend an international event in Switzerland once during their studies; in addition they have ABB mentors in their home countries to assist them through their studies. The importance of the scholarships to these young people was the subject of a recent film about the foundation.

Some 150 students have won scholarships so far, and many of them have had internships at ABB or gone on to land full- or part-time jobs with the company.

The foundation was set up in 2007 and now has 12 university partners in nine countries (Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Mexico, Poland, Turkey and Vietnam). Work is under way to expand further with three more university partnerships being investigated in three countries.

The foundation is named after Jürgen Dormann in recognition of his contribution to ABB. He served as Chairman from 2001 to 2007, and was also CEO from September 2002 to December 2004.

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Ron Popper

I'm head of corporate responsibility at ABB
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