Tyner Students Visit EPB

Maurice Fider

You don’t know what you don’t know.

As more industries grow and more opportunities arise, our future workforce has a variety of paths to choose from to find their niche in the world.

However, a majority of students are unware of this world of opportunity. Many only know the possibilities they see in the media or within their very own neighborhoods – and many feel even those options are out of their reach.

We, as a Chamber and as a community, strive to help the students of our community understand and identify all the opportunities awaiting them. On April 20, 15 students from Tyner Academy had a guided facility tour of EPB’s various departments. Students learned about what EPB does as a company and for the community, and learned about the responsibilities, skills and background needed to work in the electrical industry.

They learned that EPB is more than just an electric company, and were exposed to the variety of positions and roles held by the different men and women they encountered.

As a founding organization of the Chattanooga 2.0 coalition, we champion opportunities such as these. As stated in the recent 2.0 report, we believe that partnerships with local businesses and post-secondary institutions will increase students' exposure to workforce options and post-secondary education opportunities.

Darian Scott, Outreach Coordinator for the Chamber, worked with the school and EPB to organize this experience.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to introduce high school students to these types of career options,” Scott says. “Providing connections with local employers not only gives students insight into potential career paths, it gives companies a way to interact with and help shape their future workforce.”  

Partnerships and experiences like these put into play one of the tactics of the recent 2.0 report – to create business partnerships for relevant learning and school support.

“This is just the beginning,” Scott says, sharing that he already has other companies lined up for the upcoming school year. Scott hopes that more area businesses will open their doors to expose students to a world beyond the traditional classroom.

If your company is interested in hosting a facility tour for students, contact Darian Scott at 423.595.3152 or [email protected].

Following the tours, Scott received letters from the students thanking him, as well as EPB, for this opportunity. Here are a few we would like to share:

“I just want to say thank you so much for this experience and opportunity. I never knew what went on inside of EPB as far as the technical things. Now I know, and I may even think about starting a career in the field. The experience was truly great. So, thank you for taking out the time in your day to give us a tour of your workplace. Special thanks to you, Mr. Scott, for getting this together for us.”

“Thank you for letting us come to your facility. I learned a lot job shadowing. Also, thank you for giving us this wonderful opportunity. You have broadened my horizon on different careers. Again, thank you for giving us great advice I will use throughout my life.”

“I really appreciate the time you guys took out of your busy schedules to give us an experience that won’t be forgotten soon. I enjoyed touring the EPB facility and taking in the massiveness of the whole building and the various processes that take place. The most valuable portion of the trip was the talk with the Senior Manager of Minority and Women-Owned Business Development, Michael Jones. He was able to enlighten me on the way to work up in positions in a corporation. Again, I thank you for this opportunity.”

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