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Noblesville company creates high school classroom to add workers

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Posted at 6:00 AM, Jun 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-12 13:11:21-04

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NOBLESVILLE — It’s not every day you’ll find a high school inside a company.

The reality is that Gaylor Electric is in need of a future workforce and has taken the steps to create its own pipeline of educated and experienced employees.

“The shortage is really deep," Chuck Goodrich, president and CEO of Gaylor Electric, said. "We are literally searching for folks who are willing to be trained, re-trained maybe they're in an industry which no longer exists because of technology. But really we have been focused on the high school and bringing up that generation to the skilled trades we call it lifelong learning.”

Gaylor Electric made room for a high school classroom in its facility in Noblesville two years ago. It's called “The Crossing” and is operated by a third party vendor. High school students receive state mandated course work in the morning and then Gaylor takes over with hands on training.

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Sam Gaunt is among the first graduates of the school.

"Just being around this environment and learning so much I decided that this is what I want to do with my life because these are very tangible skills like everyone always needs an electrician," Gaunt said.

Upon completing the program, he was hired at Gaylor as an electrician apprentice.

The need is so dire that Gaylor is investing $8 million in a new 50,000 square foot manufacturing, assembly and education facility. It will include two more classrooms and will allow the company to train about 100 students every year.

"We think we will have kids stay with us for 30 to 50 years and so the idea is to try to get them when they're young teach them there is a career, that there's upward advancement upward movement all the way to the president of the company," Goodrich said. "Like I said I started out as an intern here."

The new space will also help in upgrading the skills of the current workforce especially on the latest advances in technology.

"Our industry changes consistently with technology," Goodrich said.

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