Gold for the Newcomers

A Chinese College is Training Future Engineers on ZEISS Machines

No one believed that Guangdong Machinery Technical College was capable of bringing home a gold medal in the WorldSkills Games, also known as the Skills Olympics, in CNC milling. But the future engineers beat out the competition during their very first attendance. Their training program was developed in part by ZEISS.

Gold for the Newcomers

FENG Weiyun opens a display case containing medals. Four gold medals, one silver medal and one bronze – the results from two WorldSkills Games. The president of Guangdong Machinery Technical College smiles: ”The first one! Yes, the first gold medal. That was a sensation.” He then tells a remarkable story. ”The 43rd WorldSkills Games in 2015 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, was our first time participating in the event. We came in first place in the challenging discipline of CNC milling. Gold on our first try, without any prior experience. We could hardly believe it.”

The other teams could hardly believe it either. Guangdong Machinery Technical College‘s results were called into question by the other participants, and an independent investigation was requested. The organizing committee then had the parts sent to a London-based lab for testing. The verdict? Everything was correct. Gold for China. The training school is now the top WorldSkills team in China, having won more medals than any other participant. And this is in no small way thanks to ZEISS.

Promoting talent at the highest level

How could China, a newcomer to the event, beat out the world ‘s elite teams? To FENG, the answer to the question everyone was asking is simple: “We train our talent in a special program which was developed together with ZEISS, and we perform inspections using ZEISS measuring machines. Then we send our best students to WorldSkills.” The precision experts from Germany first attracted the attention of the college at an international trade show for tooling machines in 2013.

Since the Chinese government is placing increasing emphasis on the training of highly skilled workers, schools and technical colleges have been expected to collaborate with leading companies. “With this goal in mind, we began looking for suitable partners. And we found ZEISS.” Together, they founded the ZEISS Demonstration Education and Training Base for Industrial Measurement Application in 2015. The program is very popular with students because it combines theory and practice on high-tech machines, says FENG. ZEISS not only helped develop the training concept, but also provided the simulation software and measuring machines used every day for training.

FENG Weiyun

With this goal in mind, we began looking for suitable partners.
And we found ZEISS.

Winning demands precision measurement

The members of the WorldSkills team always await the measurement results of their work with particular suspense. As the “top athletes” at the training school, they are competing for each and every micrometer. For the college, the particular value of the ZEISS CONTURA G2, ZEISS O-INSPECT and ZEISS DuraMax is that they can be easily programmed to accurately and reliably measure finely structured individual parts. Each week, around 300 student jobs are thoroughly analyzed, the results of which are then sent to the students. This gives them a clear picture of how they are performing and where they need to improve, to give them the passion to turn shortcomings into mastery.

Training inspired by Germany

China is changing. High-tech and highly skilled workers have become a point of interest for the government. “We are currently considering putting a German-style dual training model in place. We would like to combine the training program familiar to us in China with the talent training program developed for us by ZEISS. In this sense, we are looking forward to working more closely with ZEISS in the future to produce more highly skilled labor for China.” FENG says he certainly would not mind winning additional gold medals at the WorldSkills games either.


WorldSkills is an organization comprised of 82 member organizations which seeks to change the lives of young people through the learning of vocational skills. The organization describes itself as a global hub for skills excellence and development. WorldSkills organizes conferences and, every two years, the WorldSkills Games, an Olympic Games-style competition in which young people pit their vocational skills against one another in a variety of disciplines.

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