June 13, 2022
Post Consumer Brands Offers Apprenticeship Programs to Build Skilled Trades
Several Post Consumer Brands locations have expanded career advancement opportunities available to team members interested in skilled trades over the last several years.
With the challenges presented by the current job and hiring market, it can be difficult to find the right talent, and training and keeping them takes time. Apprenticeship programs aim not only to help attract new talent, but also to develop our current team members so they can move into roles of greater need, while enhancing their own skills.
Members of the 2022 Pipefitter Apprenticeship class are pictured left to right: Bryce Sidnam, Cody Donato, Ethan Bishop and Program facilitator, Rick Staib.
Asheboro, North Carolina
Post began their partnership with Apprenticeship Randolph in 2018. The collaboration also includes the Randolph County School System, Randolph Community College, Asheboro City Schools, the Asheboro/Randolph Chamber of Commerce and local manufacturers.
The Asheboro team currently has five students that are a part of the program, with two of the students being the first to complete the program in its entirety this August.
“This program is really the result of wanting to build a strong roster of team members to pull from as we face several retirements in the years ahead,” said Terence Franklin, Maintenance Reliability Manager at the Asheboro Plant. “We want to be proactive in getting people trained and grow from within.”
The goal of this program is to bridge both the interest and skill gaps in modern manufacturing and to expand the workforce pool for advanced manufacturing in the county.
The program, which is for high school juniors and seniors, begins with a six-week, pre-apprenticeship summer program that consists of RCC classes and 40 hours per week of on-the-job training. Those selected through Post must be at least 18 years of age. The Asheboro team aims to hire apprentices full time after completion of the summer program.
“This has really been a positive partnership, and we’re fortunate that our state recognizes the need for skilled workers in North Carolina and are continuing to look at ways to expand the financial support in these areas,” said Terence.
Battle Creek, Michigan
The Battle Creek team in Michigan welcomed its first Pipefitter Apprenticeship Class in March of 2022. The inaugural class is the first of its kind for the plant and aims to build a talented roster of team members, while growing their expertise and knowledge in skilled trades.
A pipefitter or steamfitter is a tradesperson who installs, assembles, fabricates, maintains, and repairs mechanical piping systems. As part of the program, apprentices will receive hands-on training with the goal of eventually becoming full-time pipefitters for the Battle Creek plant.
“This Program is another example of Battle Creek’s commitment to the future, our ability to respond to staffing challenges, and how we ‘make better happen’ every day,” said Kathleen Sutton, Human Resources Manager at the Battle Creek plant, “We appreciate everyone’s efforts, and look forward to the success of these individuals and anticipate future programs.”
The Campbell Plant in Northfield, MN has had an apprenticeship program since 2019 through a partnership with the MN Dual-Training Pipeline program, which provides grant funding. Internal operators from the Campbell Mill participating in the program attend classes at a local technical school such as South Central in Faribault, MN or Dakota County Technical College in Rosemount, MN.
“We’ve had four apprentices who have completed the two-year program, with two apprentices currently going through the program,” said Dave Trapp, Maintenance Manager at the Campbell Mill plant. At all times they have a first-year apprenticeship, and a second-year apprenticeship. “The program is a mechatronic maintenance focus, to provide specialized maintenance training.”
The Campbell Mill has recently expanded the program, with the addition of an HVAC apprenticeship. “Our hope is that this opportunity will open up a new skillset for specialized training,” said Dave. “We see the importance of putting great value on building knowledge, while also hoping to attract skilled technicians in such a tight job market.”
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