Audi Development Camp: future engineers competed at Széchenyi István University

A summer camp jointly organized by Audi Hungaria and Széchenyi István University, which combined intensive professional training with a competition of student engineers from around the world has come to an end. Participants had to simulate the behaviour of the Audi e-tron battery in a software environment, starting from scratch, all within four weeks. All the teams successfully completed the task, which demonstrates the effectiveness of Széchenyi István University's unconventional practice-oriented teaching methodology. The work of the students was also appreciated by the companies involved, and some participants even received job offers.

In our previous article, we discussed in detail the summer camp, a unique training programme in Hungary, organised for the second time since 2019 by Audi Hungaria and Széchenyi István University. The popularity of the Audi Development Camp is shown by the fact that again this year more people applied than there were places available – and if you put the participants on a map, you can see almost the entire globe from Ecuador to Croatia through to Syria.

The success of the event lies in its unique training format. The organisers have designed the concept of the camp so that students can learn by doing, working on real problems in a practical way, in a corporate environment, while developing their skills and making new contacts. At the same time they could gain insight into the workings of professional organisations, such as Audi Hungaria. Moreover, they got to visit foreign cities and enjoy organised free-time activities, which was just the icing on the cake.

Audi Development Camp
Participants of Audi Development Camp, representatives of the sponsors, mentors and organisers in a team picture in front of the Management Campus Building (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

 

At the closing ceremony, of the four-week long event, the staff of Széchenyi István University and the organisers welcomed the participating students and drew to a close the event.

"The Audi Development Camp is a project-based form of education, where teams can work on real-life challenges," said Réka Orosz-Barczi Orosz, representing the Centre for International Programmes of Széchenyi István University at the closing ceremony. She went on to say that the students also improved their project management, presentation and communication skills during the camp. "Be our ambassadors in the world and encourage others to participate in the shorter and longer training programmes at Széchenyi István University", she addressed her audience.

Audi Development Camp
Katalin Németh underlined that the camp brought together a very colourful, diverse team, which models the real corporate environment (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

 

Katalin Németh, Head of Education and Academic Cooperation at Audi Hungaria, emphasised that both the corporate and automotive industry are in the midst of a transformation process, and thus the education of engineers has also reached a milestone.

"We can't exactly see what kind of employees we will need in the next five years, but it is certain that the skills acquired at the Audi Development Camp will shape the engineers of the future. I'm sure you'll make great use of what you learn at the camp in your careers," she addressed the students.

"Vehicles have become so complex that only in a virtual environment can we test our developments quickly and cheaply, that is, efficiently. Without this, there can be no innovation in the automotive industry," stressed Burkhard Knodel, Head of HIL/SIL (hardware-in-the-loop / software-in-the-loop) at Audi Hungaria. He said that the students had achieved some really great results and thanked them for their work.

Audi Development Camp
E-mobility is no longer the biggest challenge of the future, but of the present, says Burkhard Nodel (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

 

On behalf of the organisers, Regina Sebestyén bid farewell to the participants, followed by Dr. Dániel Feszty, Head of the Department of Vehicle Development at Széchenyi István University, who closed the speakers' list.

"We are very grateful to the students who chose this camp instead of a holiday. I really appreciate the huge interest and the many questions; I have never experienced anything like it. It was fantastic to see the passion you all had for the subject. You are a special team," said the Head of the Department, who thanked all sponsors, partners and contributors for their cooperation, highlighting the support of Audi Hungaria, Gamax Laboratory Solutions and dSpace.

Audi Development Camp
Dr. Dániel Feszty also called the work of the organisers fantastic (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

 

The event concluded with the presentation of certificates to the most talented students and the jury's decision on the final ranking of the teams. Gergely Hunyady and Gergő Putér from Audi Hungaria's HIL/SIL department said that all the solutions were successful, and there were even some who exceeded the requirements by adding extra features. They highlighted their appreciation to the fact that some teams used neural nets to implement some sub-functions.

Looking back on the camp, the first few days were spent getting to know MatLAB and dSpace, then the next three weeks were spent working on projects. The work was interrupted by a number of professional programs, including a factory visit to Audi where the students took measurements on the internal test track, and later they could catch a glimpse of the work of engineers in the vehicle development department.

The organisers of the Audi Development Camp also made sure that the participants had some fun and relaxation everyday, some of the programs they organised included dragon boating, barbecues and a cinema night, among others.

 

Our portal spoke to two students who praised the camp.

"Széchenyi István University and Audi Hungaria did a very good job in organizing the camp. The institution has an excellent infrastructure and I think it is positive that it has close relations with many industrial partners," said Jernej Frangez, an electrical engineer from Slovenia, who was the only returning guest, as he had already taken part in the 2019 camp.

Antoine Jean Manache spent his first year at Széchenyi István University in the Master of Computer Science in Computer Programming and, from his point-of-view, he found the lessons learned at the camp extremely useful. "I've developed a lot in the field of e-mobility, battery management and simulation models, I can put that on my CV. It was hard work, but worth it. I can go on holiday later, but it's not every day I can get an opportunity like this, so I had to take it," he said.

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