Born in 1944, Professor Rolf Ehnert was the Director of the Steinbeis Transfer Center for Quality and the Environment in Chemnitz. We regret to announce that he passed away this June.

Rolf Ehnert studied production engineering and quality management at Chemnitz University of Technology (then known as Technische Hochschule Karl-Marx-Stadt) in former East Germany. He graduated as an engineer in 1971, and qualified as a technical translator for English and German in 1973. From 1973 to 1987, Rolf Ehnert was head of the central quality control department and director of quality for the Karl- Marx-Stadt VEB textiles project.

Ehnert completed a doctorate in engineering in 1975, and achieved habilitation in 1984. From 1987 onwards, he was a professor of quality management at Chemnitz University of Technology, where he founded the Steinbeis Transfer Center for Quality and the Environment in 1992. Under his leadership, the center evaluated quality management and quality control systems, developed statistical methods for quality control, and was regularly commissioned to measure lengths, angles, threads and gears.


Steinbeis Foundation (Stuttgart)

TQI Academy achieves accreditation

Recognized for quality career development by the German AZWV

Offering tailored development for employees and training new managers are the core aims of the TQI Academy, run by the regional TQI Innovation Center in Gosheim – part of the Steinbeis network. The ISO 9001 AZWV certification acknowledges the TQI Academy’s professional training program – making the academy an accredited provider of vocational training which complies with the German Employment Promotion Law.

The TQI Academy has offered a wide-ranging educational program for companies in the manufacturing industry for many years. The academy fully met the AZWV criteria – particularly because it continually revises its educational program and optimizes seminars.

The academy’s training programs are tailored closely to company needs and expectations. Courses include company-specific content and focus on real-world relevance, thus creating the right conditions for successful learning and encouraging staff to apply their newly-acquired skills in their daily work. One of these training programs allows students to qualify as control and measurement technicians. Up-and-coming technicians can gain valuable practical experience at the accredited TQI Measurement Center. No wonder, then, that this is one of the academy’s most popular courses in southern Germany.

Students can also gain qualifications recognized by the German Society for Quality and become a certified quality engineer, quality assistant, quality officer or quality manager. Other accredited qualifications available include process auditor certification (VDA 6.3), recognized by the Association for the German Automobile Industry, and the ISO/TS 16949 qualification for 1st and 2nd party auditors. The academy also offers programs which allow students to achieve university degrees, as well as the Bachelor of Engineering vocational degree offered by Steinbeis University Berlin. In the words of Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Petra Ohlhauser, Director of the TQI Innovation Center and the IQU Steinbeis Transfer Institute: consolidating knowledge and thinking outside the box are essential to learning successfully.

Art meets digital signage

netvico installation at Museum Ritter

The firm netvico, part-owned by Steinbeis, has installed a set of 32-inch displays at Museum Ritter in Waldenbuch near Stuttgart – creating a stunning symbiosis of art, public architecture and digital media. The displays, which provide visitors with information and directions, have been keeping art fans on the right track since May.

To keep in line with the modern museum’s strict geometric design by architect Max Dudler, netvico discreetly installed the displays on the inside of the sliding glass door at the side entrance to the foyer. Framed in mat, the digital displays guide visitors to the main entrance and provide information on current exhibitions. The color and design of the content are tailored to the style of the museum – and museum staff can adjust and update the displays quickly and flexibly using the accompanying user-friendly software, PlayEverywhere. Museum Ritter was founded to house the comprehensive modern art collection of Marli Hoppe-Ritter, co-proprietor of chocolate manufacturer Ritter Sport. The museum opened in September 2005.

Work shadowing at SEZ's female staff

SEZ supports EU initiative

The European Commission’s work-shadowing initiative aims to encourage more young women to choose careers in engineering and science. “By 2013, we expect to have a deficit of around 330,000 academics – including 70,000 in science and 85,000 in engineering,” explains Petra Püchner, director of Steinbeis-Europa-Zentrum in Stuttgart. “In light of this talent shortage, it would be foolish to overlook the potential presented by women.”

Petra Püchner has a science background herself – after graduating in Biology, she completed a PhD in Engineering. In summer 2008, she joined the executive board of the newly-founded European Center for Women and Technology, located in Drammen, Norway. One of the center’s key aims is to encourage more young women to study science and technology.

“We are actively supporting the European Commission’s shadowing initiative, and have invited girls from schools in Stuttgart to SEZ – where they can spend a day shadowing female staff members with degrees in engineering and science and witness their work up close. This lets girls discover some of the careers they could enter if they decide to study science.” The initiative aims to dispel common stereotypes about studying science and technology, and show that women who study these subjects are able to progress to a range of extremely interesting jobs.

Viviane Reding, European Commissioner for Information Society and Media, launched the shadowing initiative to allow girls aged 14 to 16 to take a first-hand look at careers in engineering and science. SEZ is backing the initiative.

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