High School students gain head-start for careers in warehouse and distribution
February is Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month. We will be celebrating with some features of unique programs within our schools!
As the nation continues to see record-breaking demands for warehousing, distribution and fulfillment, students at Thomas A. Edison High School are offered an opportunity to get a head-start.
Through the school’s Logistics, Materials and Supply Chain Management program, students learn and receive hands-on experience with warehouse processes and inventory management, including receiving, storing, shipping, controlling and distributing products and materials. Students in this program can obtain their Forklift Operation Certification and three different Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) certifications, an industry-standard certification for health and safety in construction and general industry.
William Hughes joined the program as its instructor in 2016, bringing with him 20 years of local warehouse experience.
“Students are gaining real-world experience so they can immediately enter the industry. On any given day, students are filling orders, delivering and handling the operations that we run daily for the school, while also learning what’s new in the industry,” Hughes said.
The program operates a school-based warehouse, which was completely renovated last year. The warehouse operates all supplies and inventory for the school and is home to an updated racking system to hold inventory, a conveyor belt and a forklift.
“Learning to operate and use the forklift is always the most exciting opportunity for students,” Hughes said. “After going through a forklift safety training program that emphasizes safe and proper handling, students receive hands-on experience using the forklift to maneuver pallets and pull off inventory. They know what to expect in a warehouse because they are doing it daily.”
Students use tangible soft skills, as well as critical business skills, such as managing documents used in logistics such as purchase orders, invoices, bills of lading, requisitions and quotations. Students also learn freight rates and tariffs, freight classification rules and freight rate analysis.
According to Hughes, students who graduate from the program enter careers in the industry, joining teams at businesses like UPS, Amazon and FedEx.
For more information on the program, visit their website.