Williams innovating with community partners to solve national trade labor shortage

The trade labor workforce is in rapid decline and the construction industry is feeling the effects across the nation in the form of skyrocketing wages and a limited project capacity based on workforce. Licensed professionals like plumbers, electricians, and heavy equipment operators are in high demand, especially those young enough to replace a retiring workforce. The average age of a tradesman is over 50 years old!

In an effort to develop a pipeline for students who are asking themselves the question, “what do I want to be when I grow up?”, Williams has partnered with the Department of Labor and Bozeman High School to create a pre-apprenticeship program. The goal is to expose high school students to the basic elements of the construction industry in a safe and professional setting. Participating students receive training in the Williams pre-fabrication facility in skills such as welding, soldering, and basic plumbing principals.

High school Juniors and Seniors are identified by high school faculty based on aptitude and interest, and then submit a formal application to Williams. Upon selection, students earn high school credit as well as credit hours towards the professional licensing requirements mandated by the State of Montana.

For more information about the high school pre-apprenticeship program, contact Human Resources.

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