2021 Virtual Field Trips Continue to Inspire Next Generation of Manufacturers
Allegion plc (NYSE: ALLE), a leading global provider of security products and solutions, brought the manufacturing industry to life with real-time virtual field trips for more than 500 students during the month of October. The initiative was part of Allegion’s seven-year commitment to strengthen career pathways for students through annual “Manufacturing Day” celebrations hosted by its U.S. operations teams as top local employers and active members of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM).
With October known as “National Manufacturing Month” in the U.S., the NAM’s Manufacturing Institute and many of the organization’s members have traditionally hosted in-person open houses to showcase modern manufacturing careers to students, parents, teachers and community leaders. Manufacturing Day proactively addresses a key challenge the industry is facing: a skills gap that could leave as many as 2.1 million manufacturing jobs unfilled by 2030, according to The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte.
Allegion, who has been hosting Manufacturing Day events since 2015, took its open houses from physical to virtual in 2020 amidst the global COVID-19 pandemic. Now a leader in that virtual pivot, the company expanded on the early success of those efforts to hold online field trips across 10 of its U.S. facilities and their local communities this year.
“We all know that 2020 and 2021 have been anything but typical due to the ongoing pandemic,” said Allegion Senior Vice President of Global Operations and Integrated Supply Chain Cindy Farrer. “Rather than letting these important efforts fall to the wayside, the Allegion team used its digital capabilities to transform our open houses into virtual field trips. In doing so, our company successfully struck the right balance of health and safety while still working to inspire the next generation of manufacturers across the U.S. As someone who has spent more than 30 years in manufacturing, experiencing the vibrant and valuable career opportunities firsthand, I couldn’t be prouder of the fact that Allegion maintained this long-held commitment to the future innovators and creators of this great industry.”
The online experiences featured video tours of the company’s production and distribution facilities; recorded interviews with employees across a variety of locations and roles; live presentations on local capabilities and the future of the industry from plant leadership teams; keynote conversations with Farrer and Allegion Chairman, President and CEO David Petratis; as well as special remarks from federal, state and local government officials on the important role manufacturing plays in today’s society. Educators were given the opportunity to participate in the virtual field trips live or opt for a recording to share with students later.
While Manufacturing Day efforts at Allegion address the industry’s skills gap, the company’s leaders additionally believe they are important for providing ongoing support to educators across high schools, vocational schools and technical or community colleges that want to partner with local employers to give students real-life experiences.
“We recognize that teachers, administration and staff play such an important role in guiding students – which ultimately means they’re influencing how future generations and our communities thrive. Coming alongside them through Manufacturing Day, tutoring and mentoring programs, as well as local support of robotics teams and STEM-based classes, are among the many ways our employees give back,” Farrer added.
Allegion also offers tuition reimbursement and apprenticeship programs to upskill and reskill its current manufacturing employees in the U.S. And the company is innovating in its career development and hiring efforts in many other ways across the globe, including a new program in India to hire women who have taken a pause from their careers due to personal reasons and were interested in re-joining the workforce.
“Whether we’re looking at near-term challenges like pandemic-induced labor shortages or long-term issues like racial injustice or gender bias, companies have an important role to play,” Petratis said. “As someone who has spent more than 40 years in the manufacturing industry, there’s no doubt in my mind that innovating in the way we attract and train both current and future talent has never been more important. Ultimately, bringing different experiences, skillsets and perspectives to the table helps make manufacturers like Allegion and their communities better.”
Allegion’s 2021 Manufacturing Day events are now publicly available – and accessible to all educators who would like to use them as learning opportunities for students – through the following online recordings, displayed by the location of the local operations that hosted them:
- Blue Ash, Ohio / Chino, California joint event;
- Everett and Snoqualmie, Washington / Perrysburg, Ohio joint event;
- Indianapolis, Indiana, event;
- McKenzie, Tennessee, event;
- Olathe, Kansas, event;
- Princeton, Illinois, event; and
- Security, Colorado event.
For information on career opportunities at Allegion, visit www.allegion.com/careers.
Allegion (NYSE: ALLE) is a global pioneer in seamless access, with leading brands like CISA®, Interflex®, LCN®, Schlage®, SimonsVoss® and Von Duprin®. Focusing on security around the door and adjacent areas, Allegion secures people and assets with a range of solutions for homes, businesses, schools and institutions. Allegion had $2.7 billion in revenue in 2020, and its security products are sold around the world.
For more, visit www.allegion.com.
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