Menasha Corporation announces it has partnered with GPS Education Partners to promote careers in manufacturing and technology by employing high school students who learn skills inside a company while earning credit for school. Viewed as a best-in-class model for student apprenticeships, GPS Education Partners brings together school districts and businesses to provide a credentialed, work-based program and is the only manufacturing-specific, statewide Department of Workforce Development Youth Apprenticeship Program in Wisconsin.
Beginning with the 2017-2018 school year, Menasha Corporation will pilot the program and hire between eight and ten student apprentices. In lieu of a traditional high school setting, the students’ school day will begin by spending three hours at an education center based onsite at a local company that is a GPS Business Partner. For the remaining five hours of the day, students will work alongside a Menasha Corporation employee in one of the company’s manufacturing facilities in the Fox Cities or in Hartford, Wis. Students will complete one to two years of apprenticeship experience in their assigned facility, earn their high school diploma, and ultimately be offered a full-time position. Students also have the option to pursue higher education through a technical college.
“Menasha Corporation offers great opportunities in our manufacturing environment, but the jobs of the future will require new skillsets that are more technical and specialized than what was required in the past. We are investing heavily in upgrading technology systems and equipment in our facilities, creating an advanced manufacturing environment with appealing opportunities for our workforce,” said Menasha Corporation President and CEO Jim Kotek. “Manufacturing jobs now and into the future are very interesting, and require education and technical know-how. We’re excited about what the GPS Education Partners will bring.”
GPS Education Partners boasts a 91% graduation rate and credits its innovative education model for the program’s success. It leverages blended and competency-based learning and a focus on employability in high wage jobs including advanced manufacturing.
With the new school year underway, Menasha Joint School District, Kimberly School District, Appleton Area School District, and GPS Education Partners are in the process of selecting students who will be placed at Menasha Corporation’s Wisconsin facilities. GPS is seeking additional Fox Cities’ school districts to join the program in order to offer opportunities to more students.
“Now, more than ever, businesses, educators and communities need to come together to solve our growing education and workforce gap and uplift our local economies. We know exposure to these careers, along with meaningful experiences, can be the difference in bridging the gap. That’s why we are excited to show our neighbors in the Fox Valley the proven process for making the connections needed to grow young leaders and develop our technical workforce,” GPS Education Partners President/CEO Stephanie Borowski said.
“By proactively investing in future talent and training the next generation workforce, we’re providing very rewarding career opportunities right here close to home. It’s a winning situation for communities, educational institutions and businesses,” said Jennifer Twombly, Regional Human Resources Business Partner at Menasha Packaging, who spearheaded Menasha Corporation’s partnership in the program.
About Menasha Corporation
Menasha Corporation is a leading corrugated and plastic packaging manufacturer and supply chain solutions provider specializing in retail merchandising packaging and displays, plastic reusable containers and pallets, protective packaging interiors, and packaging supply chain and fulfillment services. Menasha Corporation’s products and services are used by major food, beverage, consumer products, healthcare, pharmaceutical, industrial and automotive companies. Established in 1849, Menasha Corporation is one of America’s oldest privately held, family-owned manufacturing companies. Headquartered in Neenah, Wisconsin, the company employs approximately 5,500 employees in more than 100 facilities in North America and Europe. For more information, visit www.menashacorporation.com.
About GPS Education Partners
GPS Education Partners is an innovative education model that prepares and partners high school juniors and seniors with businesses to accelerate technical education and drive success. Students who complete the rigorous program earn their high school diploma and nationally-recognized manufacturing certifications, as well as develop skills for life and experience a career in manufacturing by participating in a hands-on, immersive, blended learning setting in local manufacturing environments. By connecting the students and employers of today with the job opportunities and technology of tomorrow, the organization is revolutionizing how students prepare for a technical career. For more information, visit gpsed.org, and follow us and on Facebook and Twitter.