SINGAPORE – In a partnership tailor-made to boost employability, Institute of Technical Education (ITE) students can now get a taste of real on-the-job experience servicing the digital sewing machines manufactured by the Swiss company Bernina.
A purpose-built service training center at ITE College East in Simei was launched on Friday April 1, as part of a partnership between ITE and Bernina Singapore, a subsidiary of Bernina International.
Students will receive an internship stipend from Bernina and an additional sum for each machine they maintain or successfully maintain.
The partnership also develops talent that supports the company’s expansion in the region.
ITE graduate Muhammad Zainul Arifin, 23, who earned his higher Nitec in electronic engineering last month, had the chance to learn the intricacies of machine maintenance during a recent trip to Bernina headquarters in Switzerland . He was hired by the company as a technical executive after a six-month internship last year.
The ITE-Bernina service training center, inaugurated on Friday by Minister of State for Education and Manpower Gan Siow Huang, is equipped with 10 automated digital sewing and embroidery machines.
The facility doubles as a learning center and a creative space, or co-working space, for digital sewing.
Students in the Nitec Mechanical Engineering and Electronic Engineering graduate courses are trained to perform maintenance and troubleshooting of the center’s machinery.
At the launch, five ITE students received certificates allowing them to give sewing lessons as trainers, using Bernina machines.
The space will also be used to deliver ITE’s SkillsFuture course on digital sewing to the public.
Sewing machines come with a computer touch screen for selecting customization options such as choice of seam, as well as automatic threading options and machine memory to store sewing settings and design for repeating sewing patterns.
Mr. Fabrice Filliez, Swiss Ambassador to Singapore, and Ms. Katharina Ueltschi, Managing Director of Bernina Singapore, also attended the launch.