F&P Georgia, a tier one automotive parts supplier located in Rome, is working with Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC) to provide its workforce with an increased set of skills and potential for better career advancement within the company. A new internal program called “Jr. Tech Pool” gives F&P Georgia employees the opportunity to advance their career and education. In order for an employee to be in the Jr. Tech Pool they must be enrolled in, or have already completed, the Industrial Systems Technology diploma program at GNTC.
“We have always strived to advance the technical skills at our facility by using GNTC as a recruiting tool,” said Michael Brown, kaizen group manager at F&P Georgia. “This has resulted in advancement greater than anticipated, including a variety of valuable skills and resources.”
Employees that are part of the Jr. Tech Pool program work as associates with F&P Georgia, take courses at GNTC, and work beside technicians to receive hands-on experience. Once a Jr. Tech position becomes available, F&P Georgia selects an associate from the Jr. Tech Pool to fill the position.
“Sixty-one percent of our current production technicians and kaizen engineers were developed internally in partnership with GNTC,” said Brown.
Approximately 17 graduates from GNTC are currently employed at F&P Georgia. Some were already employed and began taking courses at GNTC, while others were GNTC students that were directly recruited by F&P Georgia.
“F&P Georgia’s involvement in our community to fill the pipeline for their future workforce is only one of the initiatives that has allowed this company to expand five times and continue a path of solid and stable growth,” said Ken Wright, director of Business and Industry Services at the Greater Rome Chamber of Commerce.
As F&P Georgia continues to see positive results from GNTC graduates, the company has decided to broaden the internal development program from welding and assembly departments to expand into facilities, stamping, and tool and die maintenance.
“It’s a great partnership for everybody,” say Bill Scoggin, assistant dean of Industrial Technologies and instructor of Industrial Systems Technology at GNTC. “We have more students entering our program and they get better trained employees.”
Georgia Northwestern Technical College provides quality workforce education to the citizens of Northwest Georgia. Students have the opportunity to earn an associate’s degree, diploma, or a certificate in business, health, industrial, or public service career paths. This past year, 13,734 people benefited from GNTC’s credit and noncredit programs. With an annual credit enrollment of 7,876 students, GNTC is the largest college in Northwest Georgia. GNTC has an additional enrollment of 5,858 people through adult education, continuing education, business and industry training, and Georgia Quick Start.