Approximately 700 students, teachers, and counselors from junior high schools in the Moss region in Norway gathered at “Parkteateret” on Thursday, as Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, in collaboration with Moss municipality, hosted a Technology Seminar for 10th graders.

On February 2, 2024, it was once again time for the Technology Seminar organized by Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace and Moss municipality. The Technology Seminar is a significant contribution aimed at assisting today's youth with a crucial decision – where will their education lead them? By March 1st this year, students are required to choose both their school and field of study.

At “Parkteateret” in Moss, the students were wide-eyed as Pepper, Kongsberg's first – and only – autonomous robot employed by KONGSBERG, opened the seminar before handing over the floor to Baard Troye, HR Manager at Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace. An exceptional opening performance to establish the standard for the rest of the day's program.

Creating awareness of available opportunities

Vidar Lande, Senior HR Advisor at Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, is pleased with this year's Technology Seminar, emphasizing the importance of a program tailored to the student group and communicating in a way that resonates with them.

"Selecting a field of study is perhaps the first important decision students make in their lives, and it's crucial to be aware of the possibilities that exist. With well-organized interview sessions that shed light on both vocational and academic directions, along with exciting student projects like Orbit NTNU and Revolve NTNU, we offer valuable advice and guidance to the young individuals," says Lande.

"It's also important to point out that STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) may not be the right fit for everyone. Through the Technology Seminar, we hope that students leave with greater clarity. Some may have become even more convinced that technology is the future, some may have developed an interest in STEM disciplines, while others may have decided that STEM is not their desired path."

On stage, both apprentices and engineers were interviewed to offer students insights into their choices and daily routines. The purpose of these interview sessions was to provide 10th graders with an understanding of the demands of various academic paths, as well as to hear about the journey from being a student to becoming an employee at Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace.

Uniting Students from Across the Moss Region

The Technology Seminar is an initiative we have pursued for numerous years, previously in Kongsberg, and now for the past two years in Moss. As a major international technology company, we seek to illuminate the directions available within the field of technology, which many may not be aware of.

The Technology Seminar is a partnership with Moss Municipality, where we also encompass Rygge and neighboring municipalities such as Råde and Våler.

Practical Approach in the Academic Specialization

Onstage, we showcased presentations from student projects at NTNU, with whom Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace collaborates, to the enthusiastic response of the students. Up first was Revolve NTNU, which annually builds a four-wheel-drive electric race car and competes in Formula Student competitions across Europe. On the large screen, the students watched one of the previous cars as it traversed “Trollstigen” in the West of Norway. The car itself was revealed in a dramatic display featuring lights, music, and smoke effects.

Orbit NTNU, which designs, constructs, and operates small satellites, presented images from SelfieSat – a 2U cubesat that marked their inaugural satellite launched into space in 2022. Orbit is also involved in BioSat, a satellite project aimed at developing and constructing the necessary systems to sustain a plant in the most challenging environment known to humanity – space. This year, Orbit is planning to launch the first student satellite from European soil, known as FramSat-1 and FramSat-1.5, from the Andøya Space Port.

Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace is in the process of establishing a strong presence to the east of the Oslo Fjord. In addition to our motor depot in Rygge, known as Kongsberg Aviation & Maintenance Services (KAMS), we initiated the establishment of an entirely new location in the Technology Building near the entrance road at Tykkemyr in Moss in August 2022. Here, we are making significant progress in building up a substantial system, software, and hardware development environment. As of the current moment, we have hired 70 new employees in Moss, and the recruitment process continues at a brisk pace.

Besides the demand for engineers of all categories in Moss, Kongsberg Aviation Maintenance Services (KAMS) also requires both motor and aircraft technicians, process engineers, and skilled labor in mechanics and avionics.

From left: Bernhard Fog, Department Manager at Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace's Moss division, Simen Nord, Mayor of Moss, and Geir Malmedal, Managing Director and Advisor at Driv – Recruitment and Consulting. "Simen and I may not be youngsters, but we were still excited," remarked Geir Malmedal.

"The Technology Seminar for 10th graders in Moss has a direct connection to Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace's commitment in the area. Just like in Kongsberg, we need to engage with these subjects to inspire our future engineers and skilled workers. It's about motivating the youth to make technology-related educational choices. The future will determine the paths the students choose. Regardless of the outcome, we will have made a significant contribution to society if more young people choose relevant vocational education or academic specializations," explained Bernhard Fog, Department Manager at Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace's Moss division.

"I want to emphasize that the schools in Moss, Rygge, Våler, and Råde are only one part of our recruitment base in Østfold. In the years ahead, we hope to expand the seminar to also include 10th graders in Fredrikstad, Sarpsborg, and Halden. This expansion is not only advantageous for our regional initiatives but also because Østfold County needs increased focus on technology and technological competence for the future," concluded Fog.