The National Fund for Workforce Solutions has recognized three Connecticut companies - Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc., Carey-Floyd Manufacturing, and Mallory Industries, Inc. - among 11 employers nationwide, spanning a variety of industries, as 2015 “Young Adult Employer Champions.” In its first year, the program was created to acknowledge employers who have made a lasting investment in young adult workers by promoting effective hiring techniques and providing access to onsite training and skills development opportunities that result in overall long term retention and career stability.
Fairfield County’s Community Foundation nominated Starwood for the national award, as the Community Foundation was aware of Starwood’s deep commitment to internships for youth and young adults in Stamford, where the company is headquartered. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with more than 1,200 properties in some 100 countries and over 180,000 employees at its owned and managed properties.
“Fairfield County’s Community Foundation believes honoring local employers like Starwood is important as this global company in our backyard is doing exemplary work on the youth employment/internship fronts,” said Community Foundation President/CEO Juanita T. James.
Since 1981, Carey Manufacturing has been supplying catches, latches, and handles for military, aerospace, computer, electronics, telecom, automotive, and consumer applications. In addition to an expanding global sourcing network, the company owns and operates a 30,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Cromwell. Floyd Manufacturing has been a high-volume, precision machining operation for a growing number of manufacturers since 1987.
At an early stage, founders Edward Floyd and John Carey, recognized the need for a company that could produce high-quality machined components on a consistent basis, according to the company’s website. Based on their knowledge and experience, they both formed an eight-person operation to supply high precision components for the aerospace and defense industries, which has grown to a 75-person company.
Mallory Industries, Inc., incorporated in Connecticut in 1956, became an ESOP company in 1999. Located in central Connecticut, in the Farmington Industrial Park on three acres of land, the company’s manufacturing core competency has always been perceived as a cam manufacturer. Components produced have been installed in life critical medical devices, numerous aircraft and various industrial equipment.
The 2015 Young Adult Employer Champions have made substantial commitments toward helping to create well-paying, labor market-driven careers for young adult workers in their regions, the organization explained. Through these investments, the 11 Champions have been able to “successfully engage with their local youth via industry partnerships.” As a result of hiring young employees and providing career building opportunities, “they have seen a multitude of companywide successes, from improving retention and employee engagement to minimizing recruitment costs,” according to the National Fund for Workforce Solutions.
A primary focus area of Starwood’s Global Citizenship strategy is to provide general skills and job readiness training for unemployed and underemployed individuals. The training can promote economic growth of local communities and stimulate interest in growing sectors that will increase the pursuit of employment in hospitality and related industries.
At its Stamford headquarters, Starwood recognized two needs – a local need for digital media and IT talent and rising youth unemployment. Starwood partnered with the Stamford Mayor’s Youth Employment Program (managed by the Stamford Youth Services Bureau) and Sacred Heart University to provide high school students with customized training and internships in these fields.
The approach combines work-based and classroom learning, giving young adults a unique learning experience. Starwood also works with the Stamford Public Schools to implement year-round academic curriculum, giving students real-world educational experience so that they may expand their exposure to digital marketing. By working with its community partners, Starwood is able to expose young workers to hospitality, give them new skills and perspectives while simultaneously addressing an imperative need in the local community.
In addition to the three Connecticut headquartered companies, other 2015 Young Adult Employer Champions are:
- Sinai Hospital/LifeBridge Health, Baltimore, MD
- Suffolk Construction, Boston, MA
- PTR Baler and Compactor, Philadelphia, PA
- AugustaWestland, Philadelphia, PA
- Keats Manufacturing Company, Wheeling, IL
- Swiss Post Solutions, Inc., New York, NY
- Pointe Precision, Inc., Plover, WI
- OpenSquare, Seattle, WA
“We applaud the continuous efforts and steadfast commitment to our nation’s newest generation of workers seen in the outstanding endeavors of all of the 2015 Young Adult Employer Champions.” said Fred Dedrick, Executive Director of the National Fund for Workforce Solutions. “These Champions exemplify how investment in young adults can both transform individual lives and collectively change the landscape of our national workforce.”
The National Fund for Workforce Solutions, based in Boston, Mass., is a growing national partnership of employers, communities, workers and philanthropy. Together, they invest in more than 35 regional funder collaboratives to strengthen local economies by implementing demand-driven workforce strategies that create talent supply chains, close skill gaps and improve systems.