Arben Kurtesi, auto mechanic – doctor for four-wheelers

Arben Kurtesi graduated from the Secondary Vocation School Ivan Uskokovic, a three-year course in car mechanics. This young man is proof that effort, work and perseverance always pay off. Through our project Increasing access and participation of Roma students in secondary education and the transition to the labor market funded by the European Union and implemented through the Roma Education Fund, last summer he did an internship at the car center Sahovic, where he is still employed. He is happy because he works in the profession. Arben says it can be hard sometimes, but every job is hard in its own way.

In order to be a car mechanic, in addition to skill and knowledge, you need talent - explains Arben, who will turn twenty in a few days.

There are never any problems with customers.

- So far everything has been fine, customers are always welcome. There are no unpleasant ones, people from all over the city come to our service to cure their four-wheelers.

How did Arben become an auto-doctor?

- The whole family motivated me. Uncle because he's a car mechanic too. My father was also a huge support. He always told me: Son, you are not studying for me but for yourself, to make you feel better. I would also like to open my own workshop one day. Maybe with my uncle, we'll see. I am currently enjoying the work I do. It means a lot to me that I am in a way independent, I have a planned day and there is also a financial aspect. I have a sister who is married and two brothers who are not employed. The elder cannot work because he is ill. My father works in Tivat, so I am their support.

And you? Do you motivate young members of the Roma population to get an education?

- The guys from the neighborhood often ask me how it is at school, how the practice works, they are interested in my qualification. They seek advice when enrolling in high school. I tell them that it is similar to the elementary school in terms of students' obligations, but that they have to learn a little more and be good in professional subjects because that is their future vocation.

What memories do you have of high school?

I have fond memories, I had no problems communicating with either professors or students. I owe the biggest thanks to professor Ljubo Raznatovic. He helped me a lot to be skilled in the work I do today.

Arben almost became a doctor for basketball...

- I love sports. Physical classes made me especially happy because I trained basketball, I was a member of KK Basket. I'm sorry I stopped doing that, but I can't find the time. I wish there were football and basketball courts on Konik.

Do you have a message for your peers?

- My message is to learn, to be persistent and never give up. All it takes is a strong will and they will surely succeed - says the hardworking Arben.

We wish him happy work and a happy birthday!

Interview conducted by: Milena Cavic, journalist, associate of the NGO Young Roma

Translation: Milena Cavic, Milos Knezevic

The views expressed in this text can in no way be considered the views of the NGO Young Roma, the Roma Education Fund and the European Union

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