June 14, 2013
From weau.com: “Wisconsin’s first Diesel Technician intern” – With summer vacation finally upon us, some local students are looking to work rather than relax in the sun.
The Youth Apprenticeship program has run through the Department of Workforce Development to help Eau Claire Area School District students for a little more than a decade. But one local high school student at North High School is getting an opportunity that no one else in Wisconsin can say they’ve done.
“I rather be doing this then something else, better than sitting at home,” said Kohl Lamke, North High School student.
Getting dirty and working on heavy equipment is what Kohl Lamke calls summer vacation.
“Grew up liking trucks and anything that can move dirt worked for a couple farms, just wanted to work on something I like to do,” said Lamke.
Now Kohl can say he’s the only one in the state working as a Diesel Technician as a high school student.
“I was surprised when they told me that I was the first one to go through because I thought more people would be into this,” Lamke.
“He himself made the first contact out here at Nortrax,” said Kristan Motszko, ECASD School to Careers Coordinator.
Eric Hutchins the Service Manager at Nortrax in Chippewa Falls says he wishes he had this opportunity because his first semester in college he worked toward being a teacher.
“Give them an opportunity if that’s something they want to do, versus going to school spending the money, getting into the mainstream and deciding it isn’t what they wanted to do,” said Hutchins.
Kohl even gets the chance to work on equipment like a 70,000 pound articulated dump truck during his year long internship.
Kristan says each student completes around 450 hours of hands on experience over the course of a year.
“He’ll do coursework. He’ll do hands on work. He’ll travel with a field technician out to job sites. He’ll work with skilled people, anything from cleaning to services to adjustments on equipment,” said Hutchins.
It’s more than just work that students like Kohl get to learn.
“Showing up on time, doing what you’re asked, taking initiative to do something. Don’t just stand around and wait to be told what to do,” said Motszko.
“Industry wide has a shortage of people and to have students and people interested in the career is exciting,” said Hutchins.
“You just gotta try it, if you don’t like it you’ll find out right away nothing hurts to try it,” said Lamke.
June 4, 2013
From htrnews.com: “Lakeshore Technical College honors apprentices” – Thirty apprentices were honored recently at Lakeshore Technical College’s annual Apprenticeship Completion Banquet at Millhome Supper Club in Kiel.
The banquet recognized the completion of the paid-related classroom instruction for individuals in LTC’s apprenticeship programs, according to a news release. In those programs, workers earn while they learn the practical and theoretical aspects of highly skilled occupations. LTC’s registered apprentices are sponsored by employers and paid hourly wages to attend LTC in their specific trades.
Keynote speaker Reggie Newson, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, recognized the apprenticeship completers and relayed his own personal experience as his mother works as a machinist and his father as a welder.
“Without apprentices, we wouldn’t have many of the modern conveniences we have today,” Newson said. “Apprentices have made things simple, convenient and have been driving innovation for years.”
Apprentices from Manitowoc County who were recognized at the banquet, including their apprenticeship area and sponsoring employer, are:
Francis Creek – Marshall Marquardt, carpenter (construction), Hamann Construction Co.;
Manitowoc – Russell Buretta, tool and die maker, LDI Industries; Eric Chase, machinist, KNM; Jason Hastreiter, machinist, HG Weber & Co.; Bruce Heimerman, maintenance mechanic, Federal Mogul Corp.; Matthew Heinzen, tool and die maker, Manitowoc Tool & Manufacturing; Brian Hetue, maintenance mechanic, PolyOne Corp.; Adam Korte, industrial electrician, Parker Hannifin Corp.; Daniel Luckow, machinist, Stecker Machine Co.; Jarek Ordiway, machinist, LDI Industries; Hayden Schmidt, machinist, Jagemann Stamping Co.; Paul Senn, maintenance mechanic, LDI Industries; Ryan Tollefson, sheet metal worker, Aldag Honold Mechanical; and
Whitelaw – Dennis Bratz, maintenance mechanic, Nemak.
February 5, 2013
From biztimes.com: “Apprentices begin new manufacturing program” – Students at Milwaukee Area Technical College in Oak Creek begin the first apprenticeships today in the new Industrial Manufacturing Technician program.
There are seven students enrolled in the course from a range of area manufacturing companies. They will receive intensive instruction in the apprenticeship, which was added to help train workers for jobs with area manufacturers who need industrial manufacturing technicians.
It was developed by the DWD’s Bureau of Apprenticeship Standards and MATC, and is partially funded by a federal Sectors Alliance for the Green Economy grant.
December 3, 2012
From wausaudailyherald.com: “Student learns multiple job skills in YA program” – More than 60 Merrill High School juniors and seniors are currently working in the community as youth apprentices in a variety of program areas, including agriculture, finance, health, hospitality, lodging and tourism, information technology, manufacturing, and transportation, distribution and logistics.
One of those students, Allison Sabatke, agreed to share her thoughts about her YA experience for this article. Ali, a senior at Merrill High School, is the daughter of Mark and Becky Sabatke. She has been working at Allied Health Silverman Chiropractic in Merrill since June 2011.
“Joining the youth apprenticeship program was one of the best decisions I made in high school. I actually got the job my junior year before I learned about the program, but going through the apprenticeship program I get credits and an awesome work experience. I work at Allied Health Silverman Chiropractic here in Merrill. Besides the fact that I do get out of school early, get paid for my time at work, and get credits at school, I’ve learned so much at the office.
“First of all, I used to be a very shy person, and working at the chiropractor sort of brought me out of my shell because I had to answer the phones, and I had to interact with the patients who came into the office. I’ve learned how to manage my time as well because it’s very important to keep Dr. Silverman on his schedule and to keep the patients happy, too. Multi-tasking is also another big thing at work. There’s always something to be doing, whether it’s filing, scheduling, preparing for the next day, answering phones, or even cleaning: It all has to be done. My multi-tasking skills have, without doubt, improved since I’ve been working at Silverman’s.
“My parents love the fact that I joined the youth apprenticeship program. They think it’s a great opportunity and that the program teaches great responsibility to the students who are in it. My mom thinks that the program is as awesome as do I. I would definitely recommend this program to other students. It’s more than just having a job; it teaches and helps improve students’ everyday skills such as priorities and time management.
“After graduation, which is creeping up on me, I want to go to Northcentral Technical College in the radiography associates degree program offered there. There are just so many opportunities in this field that would be really cool to learn about. X-rays can show so much; I even get to see them at work every now and again.”
If you are interested in learning more about the Youth Apprenticeship program, contact Marla Konkol at Merrill High School at 715-536-4594, ext. 18037, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
November 15, 2012
From biztimes.com: “Teachable fit: Generation Y” — By Aleta Norris of Impact Consulting Group – Jeff Karlson, a supervisor at Allis-Roller in Franklin, had much to share about his two-and-a-half-year timeframe with the company when we spoke recently. A member of Generation Y, Jeff is an exciting representation of what we see in so many organizations – members of the emerging workforce who are on fire for what they do.
As I talked with Jeff about his role – overseeing a team of employees in a newly-added location for the company – he was clearly excited about what he is doing. Contributing to his excitement? He has been selected as the candidate from his organization to begin an 18-month manufacturing apprenticeship program at MATC in January.
As a part of this program, Jeff will attend a weekly one-day class at MATC (for one year) and then receive significant guidance and mentorship back at his work environment. The program, designed through a collaborative effort involving educators and industry leaders (and provided through a partnership of the state Department of Workforce Development and MATC), is designed to last 18 months and provides a framework for participating companies to support the process.
“We need more interest from companies in our business community to support programs like this one,” said Dave Dull, president of Allis-Roller. Both Dave and Julie Zaja, manufacturing manager at Allis-Roller, spoke enthusiastically about their commitment to doing their part to help close the skills gap. Along with their support of MATCs new Manufacturing Apprenticeship Program, they have been involved in and exploring additional avenues to recruit young machinists and welders, then investing in their development and success.
“We are fully aware that young workers today are looking for an advancement pathway,” said Julie Zaja. “They are interested in variety and change. We all need workers, and we’ve decided we’re better off looking for the type of person we want … then grooming them and supporting them. We need an education component right in the workplace.”
Julie went on to share that one of the things that has supported Jeff’s success, as well as the success of other employees at Allis-Roller, is the commitment of their key supervisors.
“Jeff’s supervisor gets along really well with people and wants to help them,” she said.
This is critical. I’ve said this before – employees join companies and leave bosses. Part of Jeff’s success is the availability of his leadership.
“One of my biggest challenges coming into the company was that I knew nothing about steel or welding,” Karlson said. “I just kept going to the proper people who could answer my questions. My supervisors spent a lot of time with me to train me.”
Before I continue, let me reiterate, as I have before, that while I am a fierce advocate of Generation Y, I am not advocating that organizations have the sole responsibility of catering to the preferences of the Gen Y workforce, the answer will lie in the middle.
So, what IS the compromise? The leaders of Allis-Roller have sent a clear message to Jeff Karlson: “You make a difference.” That is, without question, contributing to his passion for what he does and his productivity.
According to Julie, however, he brought a bunch to the table.
“Jeff is quality minded, conscientious, gives suggestions, is leadership minded and is responding well to the added responsibility we’ve given him,” she said.
Organizations today, more and more, are beginning to build their models and approaches around their need to attract and, more importantly, retain talent. As Julie mentioned, Allis-Roller has tried to be in tune with what young people are looking for. Along these same lines, I had an opportunity to talk with Kathleen Hohl, director of communications and events at Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC).
Reinforcing the same type of interest in understanding the emerging workforce, Kathleen said, “As we try to recruit emerging workers to our manufacturing apprenticeship program, we know there has to be some kind of cool factor. We’re focused on how we can make manufacturing look cool, because young people, in particular, are swept up by what’s new and viral. We’re also focusing on renewable and sustainable, because we see young people focusing on Earth-friendly habits. We know we have to tap into where they are if we want to capture their attention.”
Yes, to a large degree today, the individual rules. It’s great to see organizations stepping back to explore their part in the equation. It inspires the Jeff Karlsons of the world to step forward and do theirs.
December 5, 2011
From jsonline.com: “An effort to foster the next generation of entrepreneurs” – In 2006, Mark Anderson and Steven Horvath started MASTEQ, a machine shop in suburban Milwaukee that designs and manufactures tooling for foundries. Anderson was 28 at the time. Before starting the company, Anderson received instruction as part of a registered apprenticeship program at Milwaukee Area Technical College.
He worked his way up through the ranks as a computer-based designer, where he met Horvath, who served as his boss and a mentor. The two decided to go into business together, and today they employ six people and have plans to expand in 2012.
We need to encourage more young people in Wisconsin and throughout the country to follow in Anderson’s and Horvath’s footsteps by learning a trade and becoming entrepreneurs.
I am in Milwaukee on Thursday for an event in the Small Business Administration’s Young Entrepreneurs Series. At events across the country, young entrepreneurs and Obama administration officials have engaged in a discussion about how and why the Obama administration is supporting the next generation of entrepreneurs.
To further support young entrepreneurship, the SBA and the Department of Labor are announcing the Start Young Initiative, a new partnership to bring entrepreneurship education to the young people enrolled in the Labor Department’s Job Corps. Start Young will run as a pilot program in three cities; Milwaukee is being considered as a potential site.
As part of the Start Young Initiative, the SBA will work with our network of resource partners on a specialized entrepreneurship training curriculum. Job Corps students receive academic and technical training that helps them transition into the workforce, higher education or the military. Now, they will be able to make the transition into entrepreneurship as well.