"Maybe directly into the college is not the chosen path for every student," says Belinda Vinson, Communications Manager with Hagerstown Volvo.
Washington County Public Schools partnered with Hagerstown Volvo to delve into careers off the beaten path. Seventy guidance counselors visited the local plant, many for the first time, to learn something new for themselves and their students.
"We want to make sure that they are broadly aware of what goes on in manufacturing, what skills it takes to be here. This is not the kind of facility where you come in and just work with muscles below your neck; this is very much a heads-engaged organization," says Dr. Clayton Wilcox, Washington County Superintendent.
Volvo says they're focusing on next generation manufacturing, and many employees will be retiring soon.
"We are a viable business here in our community, we're looking forward to growth opportunities, and we're going to need employees for those growth opportunities in the years to come," says Vinson.
And just like a classroom lesson, the counselors left with a take-away.
"First and foremost, our folks will understand that there's dignity in all work, and that's an important issue for us: To make sure that people are respectful of the work being done in this community, outside of the education environment," says Dr. Wilcox.
Washington County Schools agree, there are great career paths in manufacturing.