WAUKESHA, Wis. — GPS Education Partners and Gustave A. Larson Co. announced a joint partnership that will allow the company to build industry talent pools and future workforces using a unique youth apprenticeship model designed by GPSEd. The apprenticeship model will match motivated student workers with promising HVACR careers and expose them to career pathways in the HVACR industry.

“The HVACR industry is facing a growing skills gap driven by an aging workforce, the rising employability gap, and youths who are just not aware of careers in the industry,” said Andrew Larson, chairman and CEO of the Gustave A. Larson Co. “Partnering with GPS Education Partners will help accelerate HVACR careers among the young student population by providing a future workforce to help fill our talent pipeline and a pipeline for our business partners.”

The partnership began with a pilot program that launched Oct. 1, 2018, in which a typical student’s day is divided between classroom learning and work-based training delivered through The Gustave A. Larson Company and its business partners. A mentor at the workplace assists students in their day-to-day activities while teaching life-long skills they can apply far beyond their apprenticeship. 

Participating students will experience career pathways in the program through rotations between The Larson Company’s West Allis, Wisconsin, facility and working as a service technician apprentice with a handful of its contractor partners. This allows students to explore different work environments and business cultures as well as take on different roles and responsibilities all while earning their high school diploma.

Students can also emerge as leaders by learning self-awareness, decision-making skills, self-management, and teamwork. They will have opportunities to demonstrate those skills in their apprenticeship placement as well as in the community by participating in service learning projects.

As the program expands, the Gustave A. Larson Co. will be reaching out to more partners to employ more student candidates, identify mentors, and take an active role in filling their talent pipelines with students interested in a career in HVACR.

Stephanie Borowski, CEO and president, GPS Education Partners, noted that the GPS Work-based Learning model is successful and repeatable.

“We represent a broad community of educators and business leaders who believe in the transformation of education and training to develop our future workforce,” she said. “This collaborative work will prepare America’s youth for success in technical careers of the future and help rebuild the foundation of the middle class.”

For more information, visit https://www.galarson.com.

Publication date: 02/20/19