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Apprentice Instructor Kevin Vaughn speaks about the opportunities apprenticeships offer, and how learning his trade through apprenticeship shaped his life.

Employer Testimonials

Company name?  A. O. Smith

Company representative name and title?  Melanie Barker, Human Resources Supervisor

When did your company first begin its apprenticeship program? 1995

What would you tell other business owners about the benefits of apprenticeship programs?  Our maintenance apprenticeship program is structured so that each intense training class through a partnered community college sets our apprentices up for the on-the-job training we’ve developed in house.  In the last few years, the manufacturing industry has introduced robotics at a rapid pace.  We’ve incorporated quite a bit of OJT for the robots that have been moving into our facility.  The program gives our company the opportunity to develop our employees in skills that help our business thrive and grow.  We are able to maintain and continuously update our knowledge and skills within our department. 

 

Company name?  Amteck LLC. Tennessee office 1106 East Court Street  Dyersburg, KY 38024 www.amteck.com

 

When did your company first begin its apprenticeship program?

  • 2010   In TN 2010 Registration officially with the US DOL
  • 2007  In KY at the corporate office in partnership with (ABC) Associated Builders and Contractors in 2007. 2014 KY Registration 
  • 1995 Started in-house classroom-style training for beginners
  • 1977 Company began On the Job Training always this is our trade the only way to truly learn OJT

What would you tell other business owners about the benefits of apprenticeship programs? 

  • Train the employee what you want them to know. 
  • Teach methods of operation the way you want them completed
  • Mastery of skill/completion of the program is the company’s milestone setting point.

How does the apprenticeship program benefit your business? Our trade is specialized our skillset is very safety oriented. The completers of our program are highly skilled and safety-oriented, and is required to be state Licensed to supervise. (not TN / other states) Across the USA we have license requirements; being in a “Registered Program” any license can be acquired.  Without the “Registered Program” employees are limited to where they can work. Our completers become the next leaders/supervisors/project managers etc.

 

 

Company name: Eastman

Company representative name and title? Jeff Frazier, TN Operations Training Services Manager

When did your company first begin its apprenticeship program? 1946

What would you tell other business owners about the benefits of apprenticeship programs? Apprenticeship programs provide a structured approach to develop our manufacturing workforce. This is a proven strategy that benefits our employees and our company.

How does the apprenticeship program benefit your business? Our apprenticeship programs allow us to develop a highly skilled and capable workforce to deliver safe reliable operations.

Company name? NASG (North American Stamping Group, L.L.C.)

When did your company first begin its apprenticeship program? Our current program started training on September 1st of 2015.

What would you tell other business owners about the benefits of apprenticeship programs? In the current labor market, good workers are in high demand and skilled labor is almost impossible to find. Due to the very nature of the stamping industry, our business sinks or swims based on our ability to find and keep skilled Tool and Diemakers. We chose to start a completely “in-house” Tool and Die Apprenticeship program to address the shortage of skilled Tool and Die Makers in the workforce. We handle all the theory instruction in a dedicated classroom with a full-time instructor. We constructed a fully equipped training facility inside our manufacturing plant for the exclusive use of our apprentices. We have two full-time Tool and Die Team leaders to watch over and guide the apprentices while working daily in the shop as well as one on one mentoring by experienced Tool and Die Makers as apprentices advance toward completion. While this may seem like a costly venture (and it is) the benefits far out way the costs. We are able to offer customized training to our apprentices that meet our specific needs and develop highly skilled employees in the process. We are creating a pool of qualified workers that will not only fill the need for Tool and Die Makers in the future but also other related positions dealing with tooling such as engineering, supervision, sales, CNC, project management and new launch.

How does the apprenticeship program benefit your business? The benefits of our business are many. First, we no longer have a sign out front advertising the need for Tool and Die Makers and promising large sign-on bonuses. Second, we are providing another way for employees to improve their skills and create a better life for themselves and their families. Third, we are creating a workforce that is engaged and desires to stay with our company and see it grow. Finally, we are guaranteeing that we will be able to compete in a global economy for years to come because we are growing a skilled workforce to meet the ever-changing needs of a world-class metal stamping operation.

Hello, we are the Tri-Cities Area Electrical JATC and we have been training Apprentices for the Electrical Construction industry since 1947. During this time we have learned a lot about the benefits an Apprenticeship program has for the employer and employee. As an employer competing in today’s quickly evolving electrical industry that requires new technology to be quickly learned and implemented into daily operations we find that the Apprenticeship model with skills being transferred directly from Journeyman Electricians to Apprentices on the job and reinforcement of knowledge in a classroom environment one night a week allows the apprentice to associate what they have learned before it is lost. This in addition to the repetition on the job is the secret sauce for creating highly trained craftsmen. For the employee rather than running up a lot of debt going to school to earn a degree that they may or may not be able to use in the career they later choose, they are introduced day one to the type of work that will be required them as an Electrical Apprentice. If they decide they don’t like working outside, in a ditch, on a roof or on a ladder they can quickly without taking on debt choose to find another career.  At the end of the day, an Apprenticeship program is more effective at training Craftsmen and more efficient at placing career seekers in the right training program.

 

 

Company name?  Valmont Industries, Inc.

When did your company first begin its apprenticeship program? 2019

What would you tell other business owners about the benefits of apprenticeship programs?  Apprenticeship programs are a time-tested approach to training and developing skilled labor to create true talent pipelines from within the local community while producing a concrete return on investment.  Apprenticeship programs allow customizable and flexible training, ensuring that workers develop job-specific skills to improve productivity, profitability, and the bottom line.  Statistics show that over 90% of apprentices continue employment after completing an apprenticeship, further minimizing cost with reduced turnover.    

How does the apprenticeship program benefit your business?  Along with the benefits listed above, one major benefit for Valmont is building a pipeline of skilled talent to meet current and future business needs amid a nation-wide shortage of skilled workers.

Meet two gentlemen who are currently enrolled in an apprenticeship program. Hear how they got involved, what they're getting out of it, and how it's creating a better life for them and their families without any student loan debt. 

When I get done with this (apprenticeship) I can take it anywhere and get a job easy, because there's always going to be a need for an electrician.

- Donald Heughan

Contacts

Tyra Copas

State Apprenticeship Director
423-715-8027
tyra.copas@tn.gov
apprenticeshiptn@tn.gov