LOUISVILLE, Ky. – August 1, 2019 –The Manufacturing Institute estimates that there could be as many as 2.4 million vacant skilled trade positions in industry across the country by 2018. This is a huge gap that can only be overcome by partnering with other organizations and companies to make a meaningful difference.
GE Appliances, a Haier company, believes that partnerships matter and we do better together. That idea has never been more important as we tackle workforce development issues going forward.
So, when Lowe’s approached us about joining Generation T, it was easy to say yes. We believe in the campaign’s focus: working to shift the perception of skilled trades careers in the U.S. and closing the skills gap. Generation T, initiated by Lowes, is a collective of more than 60 organizations committed to change an international narrative gone wrong – that skilled trades are a default career. The program is working to change the perception of skilled trades and the way people perceive career options. The primary tool to accomplish this work is an interactive website that connects students, teachers, parents, school administrators and others with real job opportunities and training programs offered by Generation T’s partner organizations.
Since 2010, GE Appliances has invested more than $2.5 billion in expanding and enhancing our U.S. manufacturing operations. The growth of our manufacturing and supply chain capabilities has been nothing short of amazing, but it is not without challenges. We have created thousands of new jobs, but we have struggled to fill and retain manufacturing and skilled trade positions. Too few qualified candidates are pursuing careers in manufacturing and without a qualified workforce, manufacturing companies simply cannot grow.
In 2015, GE Appliances convened the first-ever meeting of Greater Louisville manufacturers and community leaders, resulting in a multifaceted plan for creating systemic change. Our company led many of the plan’s initiatives, invested in educational programs and developed new ways of promoting manufacturing careers. We have reinvigorated apprenticeship programs and created partnerships with our local school system that provide significant financial resources and volunteer support. These efforts created a blueprint for cultivating and sustaining the manufacturing workforce of the future and has since been cited as a national model for helping build the next generation of American manufacturers.
Our work in promoting manufacturing careers continues to diversify as we actively seek out veterans transitioning to civilian careers and displaced workers who are coming to our community in need of great jobs with excellent benefits. Closing the gap won’t happen overnight, and no company can solve this alone. Leaders of manufacturing company of all sizes are encouraged to join Generation T. The tools available will help you engage with your local school system, consult your Chamber of Commerce and elected officials and become involved in your community’s workforce development efforts to connect people with careers and training opportunities in the skilled trades.
About GE Appliances
At GE Appliances, a Haier company, we make the world a better place, and our team is committed to leading in the communities where we live and work. Today, GE appliances are in 50 percent of all U.S. homes, and our business is committed to serving every family in the country. We are a purpose-rooted and passion-driven organization that believes there is always a better way. We sell products under the Monogram®, Café™, GE Profile™, GE®, Haier, and Hotpoint brands. Our products include refrigerators, freezers, cooking products, dishwashers, washers, dryers, air conditioners and water filtration systems. For more information, visit www.geappliances.com.