Alexandria, La. — Louisiana school board representatives, instructors, and other stakeholders recently gathered at RoyOMartin’s corporate office in Alexandria to celebrate 10 years of the WoodWorks certificate program. Currently offered in 15 central Louisiana and four east Texas high schools, WoodWorks is a custom-designed curriculum that covers topics such as applied mathematics, industrial safety, and employability skills. Also included are tours of RoyOMartin manufacturing facilities and mentoring by company safety, maintenance, and operations professionals. High school juniors and seniors earn credit, a certificate of completion, and a guaranteed interview by RoyOMartin upon successful completion of the program.
At the event, participating high schools were treated to a luncheon and recognition program led by RoyOMartin representatives, including CEO, President, and CFO Roy O. Martin III and Corporate Director of Employee Engagement Donna Bailey. Selected WoodWorks graduates also shared testimonials about their time in the program and subsequent employment with RoyOMartin. Bailey, who helped found WoodWorks and partnered with the Louisiana and Texas departments of education and local school boards on its implementation, stated in her remarks to event attendees:
“When we began WoodWorks a decade ago, our goal was to partner with educators to develop a pipeline of production operators for our manufacturing facilities by offering RoyOMartin career opportunities to local high school students. Today, 30 percent of production team members at our Oakdale, Louisiana, oriented strand board facility are WoodWorks graduates. Our applicant pool for both the program and, subsequently, for our RoyOMartin facilities has risen to an even higher quality due to the efforts the individuals in this room, as well as those of the many others who helped make WoodWorks a success. We look forward to continuing our partnerships with local high schools and joining forces with the technical colleges and state workforce commissions to further develop our high school students to become job ready upon graduation.”
RoyOMartin is currently working with post-secondary education providers, such as Central Louisiana Technical Community College and SOWELA Technical Community College, to update the WoodWorks curriculum to meet the continuously evolving needs of students for the 2017-2018 school year.