Williams Comfort Air is forming a partnership with the Metropolitan School District of Lawrence Township.
Williams Comfort Air Marketing Director Matthew Tyner said idea stemmed from a national labor shortage in the HVAC industry.
“One thing that’s clearly needed in this industry is a workforce,” Tyner said. “All contractors across the city are experiencing some type of labor shortage. (Workforce) has become top priority for any trades across the United States.”
Tyner said he hopes Williams Comfort Air, located at 10640 E. 59th St., can partner with local career centers like the McKenzie Career Center.
“We are trying to partner with some of the local career centers to utilize our resources to help them introduce high school students to the trades and express how viable of an option it is to be able to move into the trades and have this as a career choice moving forward,” Tyner said. “The reality is college is not for everyone. Being able to have a program and an outlet and an avenue for these students that don’t feel like college is the ideal path for them, career wise. That’s becoming ever more important.”
Tyner said so far, Williams Comfort Air is only targeting McKenzie Career Center to launch the program. Director of Career Education Mari Swayne said prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the McKenzie Career Center had a committee that worked with businesses in the Lawrence trades district to explore partnerships. She said although Williams Comfort Air was one of the businesses that was part of the committee, a partnership hasn’t been cemented.
If a partnership happens, Tyner said students might be able to visit the Williams Comfort Air training facility.
“We’ve offered to have students come in and see that and check out our new headquarters and facilities here and allow them to see a day in the life of an HVAC technician and what that may all entail,” Tyner said. “Obviously, if there’s anything we can do to be able to help guide the students, we are more than happy to help influence them and help them see how the trades can be.”