TUSCALOOSA COUNTY, Ala. — Logistics is one of the fastest growing industries in the United States. With this, the demand for skilled employees is also on the rise.
A logistics company is giving high school students the skills they need to succeed in the field.
The program is called the BLG Academy; it was created by BLG Logistics in 2012.
The program gives high school students across west and central Alabama experience in warehousing and logistics before graduating high school.
“I think it’d be a very good job to have right out high school,” said Brookwood High School Senior, Chelsey Dickinson.
33 students from five different high schools are participating in this year’s BLG Academy.
“I was interested in it because I think it would be good if I wanted to work here, or somewhere like this, it helped me understand how the plant works,” Dickinson said.
“There was a huge gap in education from high school kids coming off high school and a bachelor’s degree, so its kind of our mission to close that gap and we were very successful in doing so, so far,” said Maike Sievers, Director of Logistics Planning, Sales and Marketing for BLG Logistics.
As part of the curriculum, an instructor visits the classroom once a week and the students work hands-on at the facility for two hours a week.
“Here I learned how to sequence car parts and learned how to build as a team, I learned about logistics building,” said Bessemer City High School Senior, Kierra Varner.
After completion, students receive two credit hours toward graduation, certification, and the opportunity to work for BLG and other logistic suppliers.
The students also get the chance to use a scholarship and participate in the Shelton State Short Certificate Program, giving them all a head start on a career.
“Two years ago, there was a huge rush because our customer introduced a new model and we were employing within a half year 300 new people, so there’s a huge huge need for these people,” said Sievers.
The students graduate from the BLG Academy tomorrow at Brookwood High School.
The ceremony begins at noon and is open to the public.