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Max Planck Society honors trainees

Sep 1, 2021

Every year, the Max Planck Society (MPS) awards 20 trainee prizes to the best trainees at its 86 institutes and research facilities. This year, one of the prizes goes to Mandy Knutzen, a chemical laboratory assistant trainee at the Max Planck Institute (MPI) for Marine Microbiology.

This year, for the 15th time, the MPS is awarding the trainee prizes for outstanding achievements in vocational training. In doing so, it recognizes special academic and professional performance during training as well as the trainees' personal development and commitment.

Mandy Knutzen won one of MPG's 20 Trainee Awards in 2021. She is flanked here by trainer Gabriele Klockgether and Institute Director Rudolf Amann. © Alexandra Krüger / Max Planck Institute for Marine Microbiology

Mandy Knutzen began her training as a chemical laboratory assistant at the MPI for Marine Microbiology in August 2017. After completing her training, she will remain with the institute for at least two more years, until July 2022. “I would like to thank my trainer Gabriele Klockgether for the wonderful and varied training period and I am happy to have been taken on here,” Knutzen said. “Maybe I will get some further education in this field of work afterwards.”

“Mandy started with us as a junior high school student at the age of 16. Right from the start, her school performance was outstanding,” emphasized trainer Gabriele Klockgether. “And she has always done excellently here at the institute, too. Our trainees attend almost all of the scientific working groups during the course of their training, and Mandy has achieved very good work results in all of them.”

“We are very pleased that Mandy Knutzen has received this appreciation,” says Rudolf Amann, Managing Director at the MPI in Bremen. “A high quality of education at the institute is very important to us and we are proud to have found such a great addition to our team in Mandy.” On August 11, 2021, Amann presented the certificate together with the prize money, corona-related in a small setting.

About the training as a chemical laboratory technician at the institute

We offer dual training for chemical laboratory assistants. This means that the theoretical part is taught at the Utbremen vocational training center and the practical training takes place at our institute. The trainees get to know all the work groups in our company and work in the respective departments.

One special feature is that we provide training in conjunction with the University of Bremen. Practical training content that cannot be taught at our company is learned there in practical courses, for example quasi-active analysis or the synthesis of substances. In this way, we ensure that at the end of their training, our chemistry students have all the necessary skills to work successfully in a variety of fields.

Training takes three and a half years, but can be shortened to three years if performance is very good. More information can be found here (in German only).

About the trainee award

The MPG established the Trainee Award in 2007 to honor outstanding professional and academic achievements and special social commitment during training. The prize is endowed with 750 euros. The selection committee awards up to 20 trainee prizes and up to 3 training center prizes per year.

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