EAST HARTFORD - Forty manufacturing companies visited Goodwin College Tuesday looking for potential new hires.
Goodwin students and other job seekers stopped by the Business and Manufacturing Center to learn about career opportunities in CNC machining, logistics, supply chain, quality and management.
Among the 40 companies were TOMZ Corp. of Berlin, Arthur G. Russell Co. of Bristol, GKN Aerospace of Newington, PCX Aerostructures in Newington and SSI Manufacturing of Bristol.
According to the state’s labor department, Connecticut manufacturers are hiring 6,000 people every quarter.
To keep up with the demand, Al Pucino, assistant professor and director of the manufacturing management/quality management systems program at Goodwin College, said the college frequently meets with the manufacturing companies on its advisory board.
“The first thing we make sure is what we’re teaching, the skills that we’re developing, are things that manufacturers are currently looking for. We put into our curriculum the types of things where for students who complete the program successfully, they’re very likely to find a job upon graduation,” he said.
Pucino added that there are still some misconceptions about the manufacturing industry that keep students, and especially parents, skeptical about it.
“(People think) It’s dangerous, it’s dirty, it’s depressing, and it’s dark and dingy. It’s not. It’s high-tech now. It’s beautiful factories,” he said.
TOMZ Corp. offered a virtual tour of its building to show others how clean and safe the workspace is.
“I think manufacturing draws in a lot of different people. We have people who’ve been doing this since they were 16 and now they’re 65 and we also have people who have gone through schools like Goodwin,” said Victoria Pereslugoff, marketing coordinator at TOMZ. “We need highly skilled people, but we do have on-the-job training.”
Craig Churchill, vice president of manufacturing operations at the Arthur G. Russell Co., said he started his career in construction as a plumber. Once he had done that for a number of years, he was able to go back to school to get an engineering degree, then later an MBA.
“The biggest benefit (for those who go into manufacturing) is they can go anywhere in the country and have a job,” Churchill said.
Angie DeRosa can be reached at 860-801-5063 or firstname.lastname@example.org.