SIDNEY — Sixteen employers andlocal students gathered for the Career Networking Mingle: In-Demand Careers Event Friday, May 10, at the Sidney American Legion.
The event, hosted by the Workforce Partnership of Shelby County, featured 16 of its corporate partners. These 16 corporate partners who participated were Detailed Machining, Ferguson Construction, Lochard Inc., NK Parts Industries Inc., Ohio Living Dorothy Love, Panel Control Inc., Plastipak, Ply Gem (Cornerstone Building Brands), Polyfill LLC, Ross Casting and Innovation LLC, Schwan’s MaMa Rosa’s, Slagle Mechanical Contractors, US Bank, Wells Brothers, Wilson Health, and Reliable Castings.
Students were encouraged to visit each one of these companies at their booth. The event’s purpose was to give students a chance to meet and mingle with employers from around the area in the hopes of finding either a full time, part time, or summer job. Students were encouraged to attend, as this was an opportunity for them to see a lot of jobs and meet a lot of people in one morning.
One of those people was Joe Bodenmiller, a production supervisor/estimator at Panel Control Inc. Panel Control Inc. produces and designs electrical control panels for industrial machines, acting as a service other companies can use to create their own specific electrical control panels that best fit their needs. They specifically focus on having employees in the skilled trades, like an electrician.
Bodenmiller said his company was there because they wanted to reach out to students and hopefully recruit some into becoming skilled electricians. There is currently a lack of workers in the skilled trades and especially electricians according to Bodenmiller. When advocating for this kind of career, Bodenmiller emphasized the career aspect, comparing it to a normal job, saying that a career in the skilled trades was more involved and required learning skills that could be used all over the place, giving the employee a universal appeal to many companies. Skilled trades were the focus of this event, with many of the employers present specializing in them.
When asked about the purpose of this networking event, Roger Fulk, a member of the Workforce Partnership staff, said that it was all about connecting students and employers. The focus was on matching students to available jobs, especially those jobs in the skilled trades. Also, the employers present at the event were all partners of the Workforce Partnership, which holds classes at area schools and helps teach students about other available career paths through many kinds of outreach.
The writer is a summer intern with the Sidney Daily News.