Bilstein speaks on Manufacturing Month

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Governor Andy Beshear pronounced October as Manufacturing Month in celebration of the nearly 5,000 manufacturing sectors across Kentucky.

Kentucky manufacturers employ 250,000 people- about 13 percent of the state’s workforce. One school that helps people find their calling in trade jobs is Southcentral Kentucky Community and Technical College.

Bilstein Cold Roll Still in Bowling Green sponsored Matthew Mellencamp as he completed the technical college’s SKYFAME program – a program that prepares its students specifically for jobs like this with local manufacturing businesses. 

“I’ve had a great experience,” said Mellencamp. “Over the years, you’ll acquire a certain skill set. Your possibilities are endless.”

Bilstein CEO Brent Wilson said he loves helping young students with fresh ideas. 

“Adapting to all the changes in the growth is really needed right now in our company, so we really seek out young people who can help us, our dynamic, and are really wanting to take that next step,” said Wilson.

The company goes the extra step to asses their employees’ skills and mentor them.

Wilson said, “We actually know who they are from a personality standpoint, what they do well and where they want to be active in. Everybody does better at what they like to do, and that’s what we try to find.”

Now, Mellencamp has a lifelong career out his new skillset. 

Mellencamp said, “You learn multi-craft. You cover everything from mechanical side of things, your hydraulics, your pneumatics, everything under that aspect. Also, pretty much anything minor and electrical.”

And Christopher Haycraft learned his from SKYCTC, then he established his life here at Bilstein before the place was even built. 

“It gives you a sense of accomplishment to come in, tear something apart and put it back together,” said Haycraft.

Haycraft encourages other young students to consider this career path.

“It’s an opportunity for people to grow with the company and learn as the company grows,” Haycraft said.