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Every day is Veterans Day at Compco

The main lobby of the Compco office in Columbiana proudly displays plaques honoring its employees who have served in the Armed Forces.

About 10% of Compco employees are Veterans, according to Katy Mumaw, corporate director of sales and marketing.

The Veterans display remains up year-round and has been there for about 10 years. Each employee-Veteran is pictured along with their “Strengths” and service history.

Manufacturing careers and retired servicemen and women often go hand in hand, says Rick Kamperman, manager of product and process development, and Veteran of the United States Marine Corps.

For Veterans in need of a job after their military career, there are plenty of opportunities in the Mahoning Valley for work in manufacturing.

Compco, a manufacturer of various types of tank heads, is particularly popular with Veterans. Kamperman believes this is due to the problem-solving nature of the projects the company works on.

“One of the mottos from the Marine Corps is ‘adapt, improvise and overcome,’ and that’s a lot of what we do. We work with our customers, they come up with a problem, and we come up with solutions,” Kamperman said.

A career in manufacturing can provide the same fast-paced, solution-based days that military work consists of.

“In manufacturing there are many facets that come along. There’s always problem solving,” Kamperman said.

These aspects of the job are what remind him of his work in the Marine Corps.

Greg Smith, Compco Chairman of the Board, says he is very passionate about incorporating Veterans into the Compco team and honoring them. His philosophy is shared throughout the organization.

“Compco has an ‘Honor Coin’ that is awarded to the men and women who have served to thank them for their service; with Compco’s logo on one side and symbols representing different branches of service on the other,” Mumaw said.

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5 reasons why teens are skipping college and getting right to work

The workforce of the 2020s is rapidly changing due to the COVID-19 pandemic and other economic stressors. This has resulted in college enrollments declining nation-wide, universities downsizing, and more young people heading directly into the workforce.

 

graphicEfforts by many industries – manufacturing included – to promote rewarding career options that don’t require the time and expense of a college degree are working. They’re capturing the attention of both young people and their parents.

 

What is it exactly about these go-directly-to-work after high school career paths that resonates most with young people? Through our own observations and from those we’ve curated from trusted partners, it often boils down to one or more of the following five reasons:

 

No debt, please. They don’t want to be saddled with debt from a young age. The thought of taking on tens of thousands of dollars in loans with a level of uncertainty about their payoff is daunting to teens. And rightfully so. The average student loan debt per person is $36,510 according to the College Board. And get this, it’s been reported that as many as 4 out of 10 individuals with student loan debt never finished their degrees.

 

Hands-on learning preferred. They prefer hands-on learning. Trade schools offer certifications and apprenticeships that allow for earn-and-learn, on-the-job training.

 

Prefer staying close to home. According to Imagine America, they might not be ready to leave their hometown. The college admissions process can be overwhelming. Many teens grapple with the decision for years before they graduate high school. Choosing the right college is stressful, and many teens need the opportunity to stay local for a few years while making some money. For some, this can become a career.

 

No family history of college. No one in their family has gone to college. More than 40% of incoming college students are first-generation, according to the Brookings Institute. Navigating the world of higher education is hard enough when a parent or guardian has been through the process. Without a guiding hand, this option can be difficult to tackle for teens.

 

Making money is the priority. They want to earn money right away. Some teens need to support their families as soon as they graduate high school. Others are set on what career path they want to pursue and know it doesn’t require a four-year degree. Manufacturing careers are a great way to find on-the-job training and enter a career that will pay well with great benefits soon after leaving high school.

 

These trends point to the job candidates being out there and receptive to what manufacturing careers have to offer. They underscore the need to continue to aggressively market to them to attract them to our industry. Today’s young people are the future of our workforce.

 

For a current list of active job openings among MVMC members, visit workinmfg.com.

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MVMC to Receive $930,000 from Federal ARP Funds’ “Good Jobs Challenge” Program

MVMC’s funds are part of a $23.5 million grant awarded to the Ohio Manufacturers Association for a 3-year workforce development action plan focused on recruiting and upskilling manufacturing workers across the state.

 

Youngstown, Ohio (Aug. 3, 2022) – The Mahoning Valley Manufacturers Coalition is in line to receive $930,000 over the next three years as part of The Ohio Manufacturers Association’s (OMA) $23,492,808 award from the Economic Development Administration’s American Rescue Plan Act Good Jobs Challenge program, which was announced today.

 

OMA is the lead applicant and system lead entity – and one of 32 programs out of 509 applicants throughout the country – to receive a portion of $500 million in federal funds aimed at getting Americans back to work by strengthening workforce partnerships that lead to good-paying jobs.

 

MVMC is among OMA’s network of manufacturing industry sector partnerships throughout the state that will receive funding from this grant to carry out specific recruiting and upskilling components of OMA’s workforce development action plan in the Mahoning Valley.

 

“This investment will enable us to continue the momentum created through our WorkAdvance program, Ohio To Work, apprenticeship and other upskilling efforts,” said Jessica Borza, MVMC executive director. “It will also allow us to continue our grassroots outreach and build upon partnerships with the Regional Chamber, National Center for Urban Solutions, SOD Center, Ohio Technical Centers, Eastern Gateway Community College and other local entities.”

 

50,000+ annual job openings over next 36 months

 

More than 1,600 manufacturers comprise OMA’s statewide ISP network, including 120 that submitted letters of commitment to source new hires from this initiative. In total, these employers indicated a demand for 25,000+ hires in the next five years at an annual wage of $17.60/hour, which reflects the prevailing wages for the initiative’s targeted in-demand occupations of machining, production, welding, industrial maintenance, and automation and robotics.

 

In total, these targeted occupations are projected to have 50,000+ annual openings and 150,000 openings in the next 36 months in Ohio.

 

Targeting underrepresented populations across Ohio’s communities

 

OMA’s initiative prioritizes on Ohio’s 32 Appalachian communities, the eight largest urban counties, and underrepresented groups among the manufacturing workforce including people of color, women, veterans and returning citizens.

 

In response to regional needs and the needs of the target populations, the ISPs will be led to execute an evidence-based Entry-Level Learn-and Earn (ELLE) modeled after MVMC’s WorkAdvance program to prepare a future workforce. The strategy, which gives employers the opportunity to build a workforce trained to their specific needs, includes recruiting, pre-screening, preparing job skills training, onboarding, and ongoing support and job coaching components.

 

“Ultimately, the Good Jobs Challenge grant will lay the groundwork for exponential, ongoing impacts beyond the 36-month grant period by operationalizing sustainable new training programs, formalizing referral partnerships, accelerating ISPs’ momentum, and building underrepresented communities’ interest in manufacturing careers,” said Ryan Augsburger, OMA president.

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Workshop offered to new and experienced trainers

Do you have employees who help train new hires?

 

Or maybe you have some individuals who would shine in an on-the-job training role?

 

A new course has been developed that will help sharpen the communication skills needed to instruct trainees.

 

The NIMS® Mentor Workshop is a six-session, six-week virtual program that results with an On-The-Job Trainer certification. Seasoned mentors are also encouraged to take part as a refresher course.

 

The workshop combines online learning modules, virtual group coaching sessions and on-the-job practice.

 

Starting the week of Sept. 27, the next round of the workshop will be offered.

Learning curve

 

During a recent pilot run, Rebecca Peddicord, training coordinator with Pennex Aluminum Company, said she took away a lot of useful information.

 

I definitely learned a lot from this program, including the correct steps on how to train someone,” Peddicord said.

 

Learning wasn’t limited to training.

 

Peddicord said she learned about her style of communication, “such as how others may perceive me and how I communicate,” she said.

 

Workers from different companies were involved in the course, which was once a week through Zoom.

 

Together, participants discussed their strengths and areas they struggle, “which helped us relate to one another,” Peddicord said.

 

Sign up now

 

Everyone going through the program will build and improve their guiding skills through three areas: a methodology for structuring training; communication best practices; and a coaching continuum to help learners advance their mentoring skills.

 

Cost of the workshop is $1,495 per participant. There is a discount available for MVMC members.

 

For more information, contact Sue Watson at 330-307-3399 or sue@mahoningvalleymfg.com.

 

NIMS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing industry-developed and validated standards to help organizations increase performance of the manufacturing workforce.