Schreiber Foods and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College have partnered to address the need for a more diverse workforce in the region’s manufacturing industry.
The global leader in food distribution and manufacturing has created a full tuition scholarship program for NWTC students of color who are pursuing a career within industry-related fields. The Schreiber Multicultural Scholarship is intended to build a diverse pipeline of technical expertise, while providing access to education and mentorship.
“Promoting a diverse workforce is important to us because it’s the right thing to do. It’s not only better for our partners [employees] and communities, but it also helps our business grow and makes our workforce more representative of the customers we serve. Providing opportunities and access to sustainable careers enables us to do good through food and make a meaningful difference in our communities,” said Jenene Calloway, Vice President of Talent Development and Chief Diversity Officer Schreiber Foods.
Data from National Association of Manufacturing found that there were nearly 1 million manufacturing job openings reported in April 2022, hitting a record high for the industry. Nearly 4 million open positions are projected by 2030, and 2.1 million of those jobs are expected to go unfilled if we do not inspire more people to pursue modern manufacturing careers.
“With all the industry innovations, the manufacturing sector is not like it was 10 years ago. Workers need more skills and expertise in today’s highly technical manufacturing world. We want to help people get those skills, while also promoting diversity within this field. It’s important to us that more people of color see the great opportunities available in manufacturing and get the expertise they’ll need to be successful in these sustainable, good paying careers,” said DJ Daniels, Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Manager Schreiber Foods.
Studies from Economic Policy Institute found notable racial underrepresentation within high wage professional occupations. While there has been improvement in representation since 2000, with the current rate, it could take nearly 40 years to overcome the representation gap.
“This initiative started as an organic discussion. As leaders at the table, we didn’t want to stop at the conversation, but be part of the solution,” said Dr. Colleen Simpson, NWTC Vice President of Student Services. “The Schreiber Multicultural Scholarship is a terrific example where higher education and employers can come together to provide innovative solutions that create a more diverse workforce.”
Starting in the fall 2022 academic year, the Schreiber Multicultural Scholarship will provide full tuition toward a two-year associate degree for two eligible NWTC students. Eligible applicants must be accepted into the Manufacturing Operations Management, Business Management, or Electro-Mechanical Technology program.
Applications for the scholarship are available now through July 20. Awarded recipients will be notified by August 5. For further information or how to apply, visit nwtc.edu/scholarshipinfo.