As part of the nationwide German initiative “Boss for a day,” ALTANA is supporting the development of junior leadership talent. In cooperation with a business journal, our company invited a high school student from the Euregio High School in Bocholt to take a look behind the scenes of our operation, where he served as a symbolic "boss for the day.”
Support junior talent at an early time
BYK also set up a booth at the job fair of the Lauerhaas Comprehensive School in Wesel, with presentations about the dual study course to earn a bachelor of engineering degree or apprenticeship opportunities to become a chemical or coatings laboratory assistant. As another sign of our commitment to junior talent, BYK took part in a job course for students at Konrad-Duden vocational high school in Wesel. ALTANA also sponsors the Junior Academy, a special program of the Museum Schloss Moyland for cultural education of elementary school children.
Art classes are based on the curriculum of the various ages and are offered on site in the museum. The direct exchange about original art gives children insights into history and origins without time or performance pressure.
ALTANA uses these opportunities to meet highly motivated junior natural scientists and to present itself as an attractive employer.
We are part of the NRW scholarship program, which provides ten particularly talented chemistry students at Niederrhein University of Applied Sciences with a stipend of € 150 per month for two semesters. We have also initiated a one-year framework program for our scholarship recipients to optimize the know-how transfer. ALTANA has also been a member of the booster club for the Rhein-Waal University of Applied Sciences and organized a speed dating event for interns under the guidance of ALTANA CEO Dr. Matthias L. Wolfgruber. Over a hundred students attended the event to find out more about the regional companies.
The purpose of the initiative is to familiarize students with the working reality of industrial corporations and to address their reservations. In addition to ALTANA, seven other German companies took part in the nationwide campaign.
Appealing to the research spirit of preschool children is second nature to ALTANA because fresh knowledge is a precious source of innovation, and the “House of Junior Researchers” foundation recognized ALTANA for its commitment with a partner prize. After a few successful project weeks in schools, some 120 youngsters met for a joint research session at ALTANA and BYK in July 2011. The project work of BYK in Wesel shows the practical side of this commitment. BYK offers a number of internships to young people and also supports school projects in the natural sciences. In addition, local employees have committed to teaching children, from the day-care center to secondary schools, to get them excited about natural science phenomena. The “Adventure Land” day-care center in Wesel is one of the beneficiaries of this commitment.
Expanding competencies and opening up new markets with innovations are two essential components of the ALTANA corporate strategy.
For this reason, we invest € 2.5 million in the second high-tech venture capital fund (HTGF) of the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology and the state-owned KfW bank. This initiative allows us to provide targeted support to technology start-ups and gives new entrepreneurs the opportunity for specialized networking to guide their ideas to economic success. In addition to ALTANA, eleven other German companies currently support the venture capital fund.ALTANA is also a proud sponsor of an unusual architectural concept. We sponsor the illumination that has been lighting up the new Rhine Bridge in Wesel in the ALTANA colors blue and cyan at night. We see this investment as a visible commitment to our region because innovative ideas, modern technology and high-quality aesthetic solutions are a perfect reflection of our entrepreneurial philosophy.
The overall investment in the brightly lit project is about € 200,000, with a sponsorship agreement for 30 years.As good corporate citizens, we also are dedicated to cultural events in the region. We joined the support organization Friends of the Duisburg Philharmonic Orchestra in 2009 and have again turned the lobby of our ALTANA headquarters in Wesel into a concert hall. The chamber music concert with the brass quintet of the Duisburg Philharmonic Orchestra offered a completely new acoustic delight in an extraordinary environment for music lovers from all over the region.
Non-bureaucratic help for emergency situations
As a globally active and responsible company, ALTANA also is ready to help victims of natural disasters and people in need all over the world. For this reason, we again engaged in national and international charity projects in 2011. We gave € 30,000 to the victims of the drought disaster in East Africa to ease the suffering in refugee camps in Somalia, Kenya, and Ethiopia. ALTANA also sent a donation of € 90,000 to the Japanese Red Cross to assist Japanese people affected by the earthquake and tsunami in that country.
At the same time, ALTANA also supports employees who volunteer for charitable projects. Employees of the HR departments of BYK and ALTANA again used an opportunity to volunteer at the Interna tional Peace Village in Oberhausen in May 2012. ALTANA donated the work materials that were required to renovate the children’s playground.