On Wednesday, December 4, representatives from five local school districts, three Joint Vocational Schools, and the North Point Educational Service Center joined with the Ottawa County Improvement Corporation (OCIC) and United Way in Ottawa County to tour four manufacturing companies throughout Ottawa County. The program was designed to give school leadership and guidance counselors a first-hand look at local manufacturing operations and provide a better understanding of career paths and opportunities in the skilled trades arena.
ARES, Inc. (Port Clinton), Custom Glass Solutions by Guardian (Millbury), Materion-Brush, Inc. (Elmore), and United States Gypsum Company (Gypsum) hosted 30 participants and provided plant tours and one-on-one discussions about career opportunities in the skilled trades sector, their current and future employment needs, and the expectations employers have when looking to hire individuals.
“Skilled trade jobs are on the rise in our region and finding individuals with the education and skill sets to fill these jobs is becoming increasingly difficult,” said Shelly Lizyness, Director of Human Resources at Materion-Brush, Inc.
Superintendents Pat Adkins (Port Clinton City Schools) and Guy Parmigian (B-C-S Schools), and Ken Williams, Director of Golf & Marketing at the Catawba Island Club also provided key support in planning the program and understanding future opportunities to connect education to the tourism and service industry.
Chris Galvin, Director of the United Way in Ottawa County noted, “Ottawa County is a diverse economy. We need to understand and embrace that diversity and all that the community has to offer our residents and businesses alike.”