Driven for Success at TOC
Many of us love motorsport, but having a passion for the sport is one thing, jumping into the nail-biting scenes itself is another story. For former champion of the Tanzania National Rally Championship, Prettam Gandamal, walking the talk came naturally. “I love racing, it is in my blood. I love the sound of the throttle and how it shakes the earth, the chance to push myself to be faster than others and the rush of adrenalin I get every time during a race! It can only be described as raw power!” he professed. “Of course brilliant wins are not without their nervy moments,” he went on. “There can be tricky conditions when it starts to rain and you have to handle the curves on the slippery track. Other challenges include losing temperature in the tyres and not really knowing how much you can push in each corner.”
After several attempts of trying to uphold the image of Tanzania National Rally Championship (TNRC), Prettam’s hard work finally paid off when he was crowned as the champion in 2008. Thus began Prettam’s journey in his automotive career. Having completed his secondary education to a mechanical level, he used to help his dad at their family workshop, which specialized in servicing big diesel cars such as Land Rovers. However, Prettam was not satisfied with the skills and knowledge he had and hence enrolled in The Otomotif College (TOC) to sharpen his skills and to get to know more about the newest technology in the automotive world.
“I wanted to be exposed to more cars such as vehicles from the Europe or Japan. Home is still home and I have plans to return to Tanzania to develop my family workshop by upgrading the services provided,” shared Prettam.
Prettam expressed his excitement when he saw that TOC had bought 20 different Asian and European car models for students to learn from and to be exposed to the different technologies. With this, TOC graduates are familiar with the usage of high technology electronics and other technologies incorporated into the well-known, high quality brands today.
“It was actually pretty amazing how easily I adjusted to life in Malaysia. The food is so tasty and the people are friendly. I got used to campus life easily with the assistance of TOC’s helpful student services personnel,” smiled Prettam.
Currently, around 15% of TOC’s students come from overseas and this number continues to grow year on year, with students arriving from across Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East, Africa and North America. This is very unique for an automotive institution where both Malaysian and international students interact with one another to gain a better understanding of the world at large.
TOC, with its own career development centre, has successfully placed 100% of TOC’s qualified graduates into career-starting jobs since 2007. With a growing network of more than 800 industry-related companies, TOC provides valuable practical training opportunities for all their students. The college also takes pride in the high demand for TOC graduates throughout the automotive and motorsport industry.
“I remember a particularly memorable incident when I got to work solo on a brand new BMW 7-series FO2 that had just come from the manufacturer,” recalled Prettam who was placed in BMW for his Supervised Industrial Training (SIT). The car enthusiast went on to say that the Malaysian German team had tried to diagnose the problem with the car for quite a number of days. In the end, they had to go online to get technical support all the way from Germany. “I was given the opportunity to take the entire engine apart and dismantle it from scratch. This was exciting for me as I would be the first person ever in the Malaysian Auto Bavaria branch to touch the engine and to take it out of the car. I was proud that they had faith in me to get this job done.” he declared.
Prettam continued to say that his Supervised Industrial Training was indeed the best experience he ever had and he always looked forward to the training experience.
“I never missed a day as I was so motivated to learn something new every day. I took it upon myself to overcome all the challenges that came along my way and I felt a great sense of achievement whenever I solved a problem,” he said. “It is really important to have enough hands-on training in this field as we will be on our own when we graduate and no one can help us all the time,” Prettam explained further.
“I feel blessed that TOC is the official Training Centre for Citroen’s after-sales professionals from Hong Kong and ASEAN countries. With this partnership of FMTCCT (Franco-Malaysian-Training-Centre-Citroen-The Otomotif College), TOC is fortunate to receive complimentary cars, necessary equipments and diagnostic tools from Citroen for students and instructors to supplement our learning and training.
“Those who are interested in pursuing a career in automotive technology or motorsport should definitely come over and visit TOC in the process of making up their mind. I have made my choice and have never looked back since,” said Prettam.
Established in 2005, TOC has grown by leaps and bounds to its current local and international student population of about 1300 at its Petaling Jaya campus. TOC students benefit from the cutting-edge facilities, top grade trainers, technologically advanced equipment and software besides a guaranteed career placement and development. The college’s dedication to providing the best automotive education is reflected in the millions of Ringgit spent on the sophisticated software, high end branded equipment and state-of-the-art facilities such as autotronics laboratory, chassis dynamometer, Electude (an online automotive diagnostic program), engine simulators, diagnostic tools and so on. TOC upgrades their training facilities constantly with additional training aids and simulators, besides buying new vehicles for in-college practical training.
Besides their main campus in Petaling Jaya, TOC has offices in Penang and Sabah to provide detailed information about automotive courses, careers, and our unique lifetime job placement. For the newly opened Penang office at Kristal Suites, Bayan Lepas, call 04-640 2867. Sabahans can visit the office at Kompleks Asia City or call 088-488 950.
To ensure that students make well-informed decisions TOC organizes the OTTO Camp (Open Day) to show to use some of the sophisticated equipment and see first-hand how they work. Prospective students and parents will be able to catch a glimpse into the exciting automotive world at the upcoming OTTO Camp at our Petaling Jaya campus on March 19, 2011 from 10.00am-4.00pm. Due to high demand, students must call 03-7955 2811 to register for the limited seats.