Grounds Management, Human Resources, Maintenance and Operations, Training

Philadelphia Phillies Co-host Skilled Trades Program to Inspire Careers for Kids

Major League Baseball’s Philadelphia Phillies and NEST, an integrated facilities management company, are joining forces to launch the Skilled Trades All-Star Program, a dynamic initiative aimed at guiding Philadelphia-area youth towards promising careers in the skilled trades. The initiative kicks off with a series of educational events at Citizens Bank Park this season.

The urgency for such programs is underscored by a report from Associated Builders and Contractors, which indicates the construction industry needs to hire an additional 500,000 workers in 2024 alone to meet labor demands. The facilities management industry is also facing major labor shortages, with half of the current FM workforce expected to retire in the next five to 15 years.

On April 24, students from Mercy Career & Technical High School will inaugurate the new program. Subsequent events are scheduled for Aug. 1, featuring participants from MyWIC, an all-girls construction camp. These future industry professionals will learn the intricacies of stadium operations, covering aspects from HVAC and groundskeeping to carpentry and maintenance.

Carolyn DiGiuseppe, general manager of facility services at Citizens Bank Park for Oak View Group, said, “The Skilled Trades All-Star Program isn’t just about a single day at the ballpark; it’s about sparking a lifelong interest in the trades that build and sustain our communities. This is a great opportunity for students to go behind the scenes and experience first-hand the impact of the building trades on the day-to-day operation of the ballpark.”

Based in South Jersey, NEST helped establish the Skilled Trades Advisory Council (STAC) in 2023, uniting industry experts across the country to champion skilled trades as viable and rewarding career choices. The Skilled Trades All-Star Program is a direct extension of STAC’s mission, seeking to illuminate the path for youth toward these essential roles.

Rob Almond, CEO of NEST, said, “The Phillies share our passion for the trades and will play a key role in helping shed light on these amazing career opportunities for the next generation.”

ALSO READ: How Can Facilities Managers Respond to the Labor Shortage?

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