Written on: November 10, 2021 by ICM
Johnson Controls has created partnerships with Strayer University and All-In Milwaukee, building on the company’s ongoing educational initiatives. Terms of the investment were not disclosed. Johnson Controls will provide tuition assistance, internship opportunities and mentoring to underserved student populations in Milwaukee, with a goal of expanding these opportunities more broadly across the U.S. The partnerships represent Johnson Controls ongoing investment in essential skilled trades education, including technician training for HVAC, fire and security and digital building automation systems as well as finance, supply chain and information technology (IT).
Through Strayer University’s Grads to Work program, Johnson Controls will select four high school graduates from the Milwaukee area to be recipients of Johnson Controls-funded tuition for an associate degree in either Accounting or IT at Strayer University along with a paid internship at Johnson Controls. The program is currently in its pilot phase with the opportunity to expand in the future to serve underrepresented students beyond the Milwaukee area. Johnson Controls has also begun a partnership with All-In Milwaukee and will be selecting students for internships and mentoring.
“Johnson Controls is the global leader in sustainable facilities management through our products, technology, software and services, but it’s up to the next generation to carry forward our mission of sustainability and help realize a net zero carbon world,” said Katie McGinty, VP & Chief Sustainability and External Relations Officer of Johnson Controls. “We want to equip students with the knowledge and expertise needed to be successful in making our society cleaner, healthier, more sustainable and more efficient. Our goal is to help ambitious, deserving students break through barriers and overcome challenges that may prevent them from pursuing a full-time career as a technician. Through these partnerships, we aim to make career paths in systems and digital solutions more accessible while increasing diversity and inclusion within our industry. We will continue looking for opportunities to invest in important educational initiatives.”
Further, Johnson Controls is supporting a success coach to help Milwaukee Area Technical College students succeed in HVAC coursework and strengthen industry connections through efforts like networking events, field trips and guest speakers.
The demand for HVAC technicians continues to rise due to industry growth and the need for new and renovated buildings, Johnson Controls said. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), HVAC jobs will be added at a rate of 4% through 2029. Additionally, the Biden Administration announced ambitious energy efficiency efforts earlier this year, including investments in heating and cooling technology, research into smart buildings and initiatives to make buildings more sustainable. As the U.S. shifts toward a cleaner economy, the next generation of technicians will need specialized skills that will help combat environmental changes. Finance, supply chain and IT professionals with these skills will also be sought after to support the move to a more eco-friendly future.
“We’re proud to bring the Grads to Work program to a forward-thinking company such as Johnson Controls in their effort to provide employment and educational opportunities in Milwaukee,” said Strayer University President Andrea Backman. “Providing young adults with educational pathways at no cost as they navigate the workforce, many for the first time, is critical to increasing their economic mobility.”
“All-In Milwaukee is thrilled to partner with Johnson Controls to develop the future, diverse workforce of Milwaukee,” said All-in-Milwaukee’s Executive Director Allison Wagner. “With Johnson Controls’ internships and mentors, our scholars will graduate college with the skills and experiences needed to be successful in career. We are grateful for Johnson Controls urgency and All-In Milwaukee Board Member Olivier Leonetti’s leadership to develop this new partnership. The All-In promise is to transform Milwaukee by supporting our students to complete college and build their careers. Career partners, like Johnson Controls, ensure a vibrant Milwaukee when they invest in our scholars and support their career development with internships and mentors. Both are essential for diverse, young talent to enter the workforce and transform our city.”
Earlier this year, Johnson Controls launched the Johnson Controls Community College Partnership Program which includes an investment of $15 million over the next five years to support academic programs at non-profit community colleges. The investment will fund the purchase of classroom materials, learning technologies and student scholarships. Local Johnson Controls employees will also serve as volunteer educators and mentors to students.