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Sabrina Habjanic: Contributing to wire products that are used worldwide

8 November 2021 | 

Sabrina Habjanic, future materials engineer at voestalpine Wire Technology in her third year of apprenticeship, talks about interesting wire applications, recognition and her contribution to voestalpine’s success.

How did you feel about the first days of your apprenticeship...

Sabrina Habjanic

Since I came to Austria only a few days before the beginning of my apprenticeship and did not yet have a good command of German, the first few days were a great challenge. I am also a little older than the average apprentice and was therefore unsure whether I would get along well with the other apprentices. However, these doubts were unfounded, as I was warmly welcomed and could master the lessons well in German.

... and the first months in the new professional environment?

I was very impressed by the variety of technical skills we learned from the beginning, such as forging, welding, technical drawing, turning, etc. Working with metal was much more fun than I expected at the beginning, and my German skills improved quickly so I could follow the lessons without any problems.

What was the expectation?

Right from the start, I wanted to work for the voestalpine Group because I have heard many good things about the company. However, since I did not have a technical education with my Matura, I decided to do the apprenticeship and acquire this knowledge. I am very happy that my apprenticeship is taking place at two voestalpine Wire Technology locations, both in the rolling mill in St. Peter and in the wire drawing mill in Bruck, and I can see a lot from both companies. I have learned so much in the short time that I can already take on many tasks in my daily work life and hope that I will get the chance to continue my training even after the apprenticeship.

Which products are you proud of?

I am very proud that our products are used in a wide variety of applications all over the world. Whether I am crossing a bridge, shopping at IKEA or sitting in a beautiful vehicle, I always wonder if it might contain the wire, I have tested in the past.

What did you know at the beginning about voestalpine?

I knew that voestalpine is a top employer in our region and I thought that I would have a secure job here after completing my apprenticeship. I have to honestly admit that was the main motivation for applying. In the meantime, however, I have developed a real passion for working with steel or wire and do not regret my decision for a second.

How are you prepared for a (partly) digital professional future in the course of your training?

It is inevitable that data and information will become even more important in the future than they already do. Both in Bruck and in Donawitz, great emphasis is placed on digitization and automation. I am particularly fascinated by the new Hi-Inspect system, which is able to detect cracks during rolling and is intended to warn us inspectors in both plants where we may need to check more closely. A lot of know-how, calibration and the correct interpretation of the data are necessary before such a system can work reliably in daily production.

Was there a special moment in your training that you will remember for a long time to come?

I made a rose from copper sheet as an apprenticeship workpiece, which was so well received that many instructors asked me to make more of it. It was an acknowledgement that gave me great pleasure.

In your opinion, what distinguishes the training?

What I like about the teaching is that the learning content is perfectly adapted to the future profession. You learn things that you need 100% and can use in your professional life. Of course, the general education of a normal school is also very important, but I find the combination of vocational school and practical work more effective.

Why should I apply to voestalpine?

As an apprentice at voestalpine, you are not “thrown in the cold”, but you notice that voestalpine is very experienced in training apprentices. You get the time to master what you have learned first, before you have to use it. It is also not self-evident that even as an apprentice you already receive success rewards or recognitions such as Christmas vouchers.

What tips do you have for all those who want to apply to voestalpine?

Do it! Personally, I can’t think of a company in the region that can offer a better apprenticeship.


What are your hopes for the next two years?

In about 1.5 years I will have finished my training. I very much hope that I will have the opportunity to continue my education, for example by attending a master class or a part-time study programme, in order to be able to contribute even more to the success of voestalpine.