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Production specialist at the chemical company Peters
Production specialist at the chemical company Peters

"Every day is a stroke of luck for me here." Maxim Wetzel is a production specialist at the chemical company Peters in Kempen. The 23-year-old loves his job. Producing coatings, mixing resins, filling and sealing containers, packing the containers ready for dispatch - these are tasks that come easily to the young man. The man from Kempen has been working as a chemical worker at Peters for five years. "You have to work cleanly and carefully," says the native Ukrainian who came to the Lower Rhine area at the age of three and has now been living in Kempen with his wife for three years.

Maxim Wetzel admits that he came to the chemical industry rather by chance. As part of the commercial school in Krefeld, where he completed his secondary school leaving certificate, he had to get to know everyday life in a company as a preparation for his career. At the end of a two-week internship at Peters, his trainers told him: "You're good, do your training with us!" That's how his career began. The basketball fan was taken on seamlessly after the two-year apprenticeship. Now Maxim is considering whether to continue his education and add a technician or a master craftsman qualification in chemistry to his training.

Interesting work and good pay

Kai-Oliver Müller entered the career ladder in a completely different way. Being in the profession for twelve years, the 27-year-old from Viersen has already completed a baker's apprenticeship and worked in drywall construction for a few years. "Besides the interesting work, the good pay and the security are also important to me," says the man from Viersen, who is now entering his second year of apprenticeship as a chemical production specialist at Peters. By this, Kai-Oliver Müller means, for example, safeguards such as the chemical pension fund, which gives him a good feeling about his employer with a view to old age.

The training he receives at Peters is multifaceted. Kai-Oliver gets to know all the departments - from coating production and filling to grinding and shipping to the locksmith's shop and incoming and outgoing goods. "My favourite place at Peters is the production room where the coatings are made," says the creative young man who swaps his torque spanner for a drawing pencil at the end of the day.

Exciting to produce coating materials for high-tech electronics

Both young men feel very comfortable in the production and maintenance of a chemical company and see their future there. "It's exciting to produce coating materials for high-tech coatings for electronics," Maxim Wetzel emphasises. In the Kempen-based family business, the two also like the friendly atmosphere and the team-oriented work. "We know that we can rely on each other and we laugh a lot together," says Kai-Oliver Müller.

At the stirrer, Maxim Wetzel (left) and Kai-Oliver Müller ensure that the Peters conformal coating gets a uniform consistency. Gloves and safety goggles are mandatory.

Hiring new trainees

In the occupational profile of the chemical industry, the chemical production specialist is the "little brother" of the chemical technician, which is the training for the classic chemical worker. The apprenticeship for chemical technicians is three and a half years longer. "The chemical production specialist deals more with the basics, while the chemical technician also tackles more specialised tasks," says Stefanie Barian, the deputy plant manager at Peters, describing the difference. Peters currently employs a production specialist in chemistry, as well as three apprentices in this job. "Two are now being taken on as chemical workers, so we will be hiring new trainees again." In the course of the dual education, the Berufskolleg Uerdingen (BKU) is the vocational school for the chemical worker trainees; this is where the basics are taught.


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