North Dakota’s more than 100 billion dollar energy industry is one of many facing an aging workforce.
And to fill positions baby boomers are looking to a younger generation for help.
It isn’t a new problem but more energy companies are searching for time and talent from a slightly younger crowd.
“We have to replace those aging workers with newer workers which are considered to be the millennials, ” Todd Schock, training superintendent, Andeavor Refinery, Dickinson says.
And for North Dakota energy, what’s inside the Bismarck State College Energy Center is one of its most valuable resources.
“I’ve always loved working with my hands and loved the geometry and chemistry part of school, it’s always just super interesting, I love tinkering with things, I love learning how things work,’ Grace Persico, BSC Power Plant Technology Program says.
Persico is one of a generation of students the industry is looking to bring on.
“We’re reformatting our training materials, smaller snippets, more engaging, trying to get electronics and some of the technologies of today rolled into what use to be pretty much just textbook learning,” Schock says.
While providing the technology and experience needed to keep them in the field.
“We have to figure out how we can engage them and keep them long term employees,” Schock says.
An inside look and an inside track to North Dakota’s booming energy industry.
“It’s just cool to see what powers all of Bismarck,” Persico says.
And the workers who keep it all running.
“You can also be working as a team player, you can work by yourself and just contributing to doing something so small can make something so hug,” Persico says.
With the students, soon to become the workers, that power our state.
Energy experts say they’re working hard to recruit the next generation of energy workers through investment in more technology based learning, outreach to college and high school age students, and hands on opportunities to learn from industry leaders.