PITTSBURG — Executives from Interstates, a major electrical construction company with more than 1,000 employees throughout the U.S., visited Pittsburg State University on Monday for a signing ceremony for four students in PSU’s College of Technology.
Dave Crumrine, Interstates president of construction, and Doug Brunsting, Interstates vice president of regional offices, spoke at the ceremony, which was held at the Kansas Technology Center.
The four students, Brandon Walker of Girard, Stephen Gideon of Weir, Cody Mein of Pittsburg, and Jace Burdick of Rose Hill, who are all electrical technology majors in the School of Construction, interned with Interstates and have now committed to entering the company’s apprenticeship program after graduation. They have signed on to be a part of Interstates’ national traveling team.
“We’re about building careers, building relationships like this, because we are trying to build a great company,” Crumrine said. “We’ve had a lot of success, but it is super hard to get tradesmen.”
Crumrine talked about the high demand for workers with the skills students are learning in the College of Technology and the School of Construction.
“You have a career for the future,” he said. “You’re in the right slot to be very successful. And how you decide to work with us, we’ll figure that out, but no matter where you go, the trades are an awesome opportunity for at least the next decade, probably two decades before it even slows down. We are so short on professional craftspeople that the world really is a huge opportunity.”
Brunsting also discussed Interstates’ apprentice program at the ceremony.
“You guys have started your initial education here, you’ve started training,” Brunsting said. “We piggyback right on that when you get to Interstates. We invest in our people.”
The students who signed on with Interstates also discussed the significance of the ceremony Monday.
“It’s a great opportunity to get both Pitt State and Interstates involved and get the name out there for both people,” said Walker. “Pitt State and Interstates are just great people to be involved with and I hope other people will in the future.”
Gideon, who like Walker is graduating in the spring, also said it felt great to be recognized by Interstates as he gets ready to start his career with the company.
“It’s actually really cool that the company actually cares enough about its employees to send top executives to come down,” Gideon said.
“It feels pretty good to actually get an opportunity to know I’m going somewhere after school.”