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Chamber honors Southwire for education support

PICTURED ARE DALE VANVACTOR, PRODUCTION AREA MANAGER AND CURTIS QUEEN, QUALITY MANAGER FOR SOUTHWIRE; IVONNE REED, REPRESENTING THE LAKE NORMAN EDUCATION COLLABORATIVE; JASMINE MONET, SOUTHWIRE HUNTERSVILLE HR; HUNTERSVILLE COMMISSIONER MELINDA BALES; RICHARD PAPPAS LKN CHAMBER CHAIR; AND CHRIS MCGILL, SOUTHWIRE PLANT MANAGER. Photo credit: John McHugh/Ocaid Photography

The Lake Norman Chamber of Commerce recognized the Southwire Huntersville plant for “outstanding support of education” at the Education PowerLuncheon at Northstone Country Club. Southwire received the first “Inspire our Future” award at the event which featured Mark Johnson, superintendent of public instruction in North Carolina

Southwire participated in Manufacturing Tours designed to enlighten high school and junior high school vocational guidance counselors on what skills are required for regional industries. The company also showcases their operations to both the Chamber’s Adult and Junior Leadership Lake Norman programs.

Southwire, a privately held company with 8,000 employees, is one of the world’s leading developers, manufacturers and suppliers of building wire and utility cable.

“Having a community partner like Southwire helps us draw attention to the career opportunities that await students as they transition into the workforce. The partnership also helps us educate our educators on those same opportunities,” said Melinda Bales, Mayor Pro tem for the Town of Huntersville, and co-chair of the Lake Norman Education Collaborative.

Jasmine Monet, Southwire Huntersville’s HR specialist, stressed the importance of helping educate local youth about career opportunities, particularly jobs that do not require a college degree. By doing this, Southwire encourages at-risk students to stay in school and receive their diplomas so they can have better opportunities for a career after graduation.

“Seeing so many kids in this area who are dropping out of high school is often times due to them not seeing college in their future and therefore not thinking they have a chance at a career,” said Monet. “We want to encourage them to stay in high school and work toward their diplomas, because it’s our chance to show them that they can still have opportunities outside of just going to a university.”

Chris McGill, Southwire Huntersville’s plant manager, said they want to encourage any and all students within their communities. “It will not only help the individuals, but Southwire and the future of the manufacturing industry,” he said.

“For us it’s about building goodwill in the community and supporting kids from all different backgrounds. We want to be inclusive of everyone, regardless of their socio-economic position,” said McGill. “

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