Engaging with the wider community beyond our Pertronic customers

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One of our Pertronic philosophies is to engage with wider stakeholder groups beyond our customers, and to especially be active within our local community.

Our core activity is making, manufacturing, selling and servicing our sophisticated fire alarm and detection systems. But we also want to help as part of a wider social ecosystem.

For the past six years, we’ve taken onboard student interns for two weeks, beginning in the second week of January. Often these young women and men are the children, grandchildren and otherwise relations of Pertronic employees.

This year we hired four students, who are all paid for their labour and learning.

Each of their working days were split into four quarters and four different areas.

240129 School interns 2024 this time

Pertronic Industries school holiday interns, from top left, clockwise. Daniella Wu, Silas Ferrer, Maddison Mills and Mikaelah Coladilla

PTH – plated through hole – mounting electrical components through the PCB (printed circuit board) by hand

Final Assembly – final process stage, such as adding cases, connectors, mini jumps, cables and packaging before placing PCBs on Kanban shelves/stock

Heats – assist with making and testing of numerous varieties of heat detectors

Prep – assist with the assembly of end-of-line resistors

The students also learn how to solder. This is often one of the most favoured roles and involves soldering different components to PCBs.

Pertronic M.D. and founder David Percy says that during their two week residency students are also given brief presentations by members of the staff in other areas of the company.

“By understanding the product and services we provide through our Tech Services, R&D hardware and R&D software, students gain a much better understanding of how business is a continuum from the genesis of an idea,” he says.

“Turning that idea into part of a standalone fire detection and alarm system that helps protect people and property is a multi-faceted progression.

“We like to think our students help spread the word of the design and production smarts behind our products and services to their wider communities.

“The fact our students earn money while doing so is another added bonus.”

This year’s interns (and perhaps how they’ll relay their experiences to their friends) are:

Mikaelah Coladilla. Entering Year 11 at Wellington High School and studying Maths, English, Food Technology, Business Studies, Geography and Horticulture. Final Assembly and Soldering were her more preferred roles. “It’s been fun, a good experience…and of course I get to earn some money!” Her father works in dispatch and testing at Pertronic.

Silas Ferrer. About to enter Year 12 at St Bernard’s in Lower Hutt, Silas is studying English, Maths, Science, Japanese and Geography. His father works in as a Pertronic procurement engineer, though Silas had never visited the site before. “I had no idea of the amount of work involved in producing a final product [fire detection and alarm panel]. My most interesting experiences were the soldering and final assembly, and I’ll be telling my friends it was a fun experience to have.”

Danielle Wu. In 2024 will be Year 11 at Chilton St James, studying Cambridge Exams in Extended Maths, English Literature, Art, Chinese, Biology and Physics. Her mother works in the Pertronic marketing department. "I liked soldering and final assembly. I’ll be telling others that parts of the job are quite fun, and it’s nice meeting the other staff and learning about how all the components fit together to make the final assembly.”

Maddison Mills. Entering Year 11 at Tawa College, her father is the Pertronic Production Manager. She will study English, Maths, Science, P.E., Fashion and Media Studies. “Soldering was the most fun, and final assembly was interesting too. I’ll be telling my friends that it was a good experience, as you get to see what you do and don’t like about working.”