Reymelix Perez and Jesus Farias, both Automotive Tech students at Gateway Community College, were recently awarded a $2,000 Grainger Tools for Tomorrow® scholarship by Grainger, a local distributor of facilities maintenance supplies.
“Grainger is investing in the future of industry and communities through the Grainger Tools for Tomorrow Scholarship Program,” said Darryl Turner, market manager of Grainger’s Market in North Haven. “We are proud to partner with Gateway Community College and believe business and community college partnerships are one solution to building a stronger workforce.”
Grainger and GCC have been partners in the Tools for Tomorrow® scholarship since 2008. The college offers more than 20 programs of study in engineering and applied technologies that qualify for the scholarship. “The Grainger Tools for Tomorrow Scholarship provides a great opportunity for students in several programs within the Engineering and Applied Technologies with financial assistance that can be applied toward tuition,” said Paul Silberquit, GCC’s director of engineering and applied technologies. “Award recipients also get a comprehensive set of tools upon graduation, to help them get started in their careers.”
Many businesses that rely on skilled workers report difficulty finding qualified individuals to fill open jobs. In fact, skilled trades have been the hardest segment of the workforce for employers to staff for the last three years, according to ManpowerGroup. In an effort to promote solutions around this issue, in October, Grainger launched an interactive skilled trades Playbook that connects businesses and community colleges in an effort to boost local workforce development. This resource, developed in conjunction with Skills for America’s Future, serves as a one-stop, how-to guide with tips, best practices and other tools to help businesses and community colleges work together to train and advance workers in the industrial skilled trades. Visit www.skilledtradesplaybook.org to download the full Skilled Trades Playbook and learn more about the skills gap challenge.
“I greatly appreciate our partnership with Grainger and the opportunities that the Tools for Tomorrow® scholarship program brings,“ says GCC President Dorsey Kendrick. “It’s this kind of commitment that helps make dreams a reality for our students, and sets an example for what is possible when the business community invests in workforce development and higher education. I congratulate Reymelix and Jesus. They make us proud.”