...from Győr to the world

Trumpeter and Process Engineer: a Story of Faith and Will

2023. 07. 21.

As a successful trumpet player and music teacher working in Zalaegerszeg, it seems a rather absurd idea in many ways to get a job as an operator in Győr. Yet Ágoston Persa took this step and now looks back on it as one of the best decisions of his life.

Ágoston arrived in our vehicle assembly shop 5 years ago with ambitious plans to create the foundations for a new, more stable and family-centered life. Thanks to his resoluteness and persistent humble work, he is now the happy owner of a diploma in Mechanical Engineering with distinction and, armed with his experience as an operator, he fulfils his duties as a Process Engineer at Audi Hungaria. 
What makes a trumpeter and music teacher apply for an operator position at Audi Hungaria’s vehicle factory? 

I grew up in a family with 6 children, so I got used to being part of a large family. As an adult and a parent, I have also come to understand the value of having several brothers and sisters and a large family. So my wife and I were planning to have several children, but the nature of our profession made it very difficult to combine child-rearing with work. We both have a degree in music pedagogy, and we worked in that field for many years. However, when you are a music teacher, students tend to come to lessons from the afternoon until early evening. We only had one child at the time, but even then it was difficult to hold instrumental lessons and still be together as a family during the week. I knew that in the long term I would need a job that would allow us to live and maintain family values and also provide us with a stable financial situation. 

Why did you choose Audi Hungaria? 

My father-in-law has worked as an engineer in powertrain production for 27 years, so we were able to see first-hand the conditions and opportunities the company provides. I felt that in the long term, securing a stable future for my family was more important than achieving artistic success. As a result, and after looking at the open positions in the company, I applied for a job as an operator, where I was hired and the doors of Audi Hungaria opened to me. I did not see much of the day-to-day life of an operator from the outside, but I knew that I would be working 8 hours a day on a fixed schedule – and that other than that, we could live our own lives. After finishing the school-year as a teacher, we moved to Győr and I changed jobs.

During my first factory visit, I saw how professionally the organization works and I was already impressed by the engineering precision with which this huge system is run. So I knew that, regardless of my job, I would learn a lot. I felt back then that I wanted to take every opportunity to develop myself further during my time at Audi.

When did you decide to get a degree in engineering? 

I found myself in a completely new world, but the more time I spent in my job, the more I wanted to get more and more involved in the company and even be a shaper of it.

I did my best to move up the “corporate ladder” as quickly and as effectively as possible. I was proactive in seeking opportunities and inquiring intensively with area managers and other managers about ways to get ahead. That is how I found out how the company could support my university education alongside work.

I come from a very different background, but during my career as a performing artist I learned that big goals can be achieved by setting small goals and deadlines, and that once you have mastered that, you can apply it anywhere. To this day, this has been the guiding principle in my life. So I decided to go to university and study mechanical engineering, and set myself the goal of continuing my career as an engineer in the company. I was very enthusiastic and with this enthusiasm, I started to learn physics for my secondary school leaving exam, as this subject had been neglected during my music education. 

What did they say to all this in your area? 

Actually, I did not tell anyone that I started it, because I was not quite sure myself what I was doing and whether I would actually succeed. But rationally thinking, I saw a greater chance of failure doing it besides having a job and children, but I was determined to achieve my goal. I was going to be a mechanical engineer! 

It took me 3 months to prepare for the physics exam in complete secrecy. After passing the secondary school leaving exam, I applied to Széchenyi István University to study Mechanical Engineering.

The first year was extremely difficult. I was studying in addition to working and, as my colleagues in my field did not know about my studies, I used my personal time off to attend university classes on weekends. Small goals drove me towards my big goal. I decided that if I could do the maths, I would keep going steadfastly. With 95%, I got an A... and I passed all my other subjects. It was a tiring time, but I was driven by my belief in the future. I saw myself building a bright beautiful future and a new chapter for my family with each and every step I took. After 1 year of successful academic performance, I told it to my supervisors and colleagues who supported me 100% from the very first moment. Fortunately, they were very satisfied with my work, maybe I can say that I was a strong and good member of the team even while I was studying. They were satisfied with me, so I was given financial support and study days off to finish university.  

How big a challenge was it to meet the university requirements while working? 

Those were really trying and difficult times with quite a few sleepless nights, but I can definitely say that it was worth it. I also wrote my thesis on Audi, which was about optimizing vehicle manufacturing using hologram technology. While writing my thesis paper, I had the opportunity to work with experienced engineers, which gave me an insight into the practice of engineering. And a few months after I graduated as a mechanical engineer, I was given the opportunity to work in a job that matched my new qualification. From this year on, I will be able to optimize our production lines as a process engineer. The experience I gained in my previous years at Audi is a very good basis for my work. I did it myself and for me, this is of great value. And the progress will not stop now, I still have big goals and I see a lot of perspectives ahead of me to develop and the company will continue to give me a supporting hand in this.

In the meantime, I have had 2 more children, so my plans to have a big family have been fulfilled and my wife and I have now a happy family of 3 children. 

What do you think is the biggest lesson from your story? 

Do not just talk about things, but go and do them, because with faith and willpower, everything is possible. Even when the road is bumpy and even when it is difficult. If we put the energy in, I can see from my own example that it is possible to win!


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