by Calleigh Kress*
June 15, 2022 - The Crest Family of Businesses hosted educators from across Louisiana to help equip them and their students for future success. Crest Industries strives to be connected to our community and to help create a sustainable future for generations to come. Over the past few years, Crest has partnered with the Workplace Experience Exchange(WEE) Camp and the Orchard Foundation to create opportunities for the teachers and students of Louisiana.
WEE Camp allows school educators to learn with hands-on experiences about trends, skill requirements, and many different opportunities in the industries that Crest serves. Through this partnership, we strive to provide our school partners with the opportunity to empower their students, faculty, and staff to discover their passions beyond their limits. Many teachers from a variety of high schools come to see different businesses and disciplines within the company and learn about assorted jobs and career paths their students can pursue.
There are two different tracts for WEE Camp. WEE Camp I is a four-day program for teachers to visit businesses and postsecondary institutions to learn about resources and skill requirements so they can equip their students with these factors in mind. WEE Camp I participants who came to Crest’s corporate headquarters in Pineville, LA, learned from current team members and toured our offices and manufacturing facilities. Participants learned about our companies and gained tools to help prepare their students for future success at businesses like Crest Industries.
WEE Camp II is a more in-depth five-day program that has an intense focus on the skills that students need in today's job market to qualify for certain positions. Most of the camp consists of educators visiting multiple local businesses for more detailed discussions. The WEE Camp II participants spent two days interacting with team members, learning from our executive team, and observing what it takes to be a part of Crest Industries’ teams in Louisiana and beyond. These teachers job shadowed many of our team members at Beta Engineering, DIS-TRAN Packaged Substations, and DIS-TRAN Steel, and they took a tour of our facilities at the Alexandria Port including the DIS-TRAN Packaged Substations Project Support ServicesCenter and the R&D lab at Avant Organics.
During WEE Camp II, teachers shared their motivation to contribute and participate in the program. Some said, “to see more of the business aspect of things” rather than just focusing on curriculum from an educator’s perspective. One educator shared, “My main motivation was to help my son, who recently graduated high school, to figure out what he was going to do with his life. Because he is not academically inclined, it has been difficult for him.”
She continued to say that when she walked into Crest’s doors, she found exactly what she was looking for: resources to equip students of all academic abilities. Our teams shared some of the leadership development, team-building, and group dynamic tools we use every day so the educators could bring them into their classrooms in the upcoming school year. This is what Crest strives to do - empower individuals and communities to grow beyond what we believe is possible, and WEE Camp is a key part of that mission.
*This article was written by Calleigh Kress, 2022 HR/Marketing Summer Intern at Crest Operations, and edited by the Crest Marketing Team. Calleigh is a current freshman at a local high school in central Louisiana, and she spent the summer supporting our Human Resources and Marketing teams with various projects including facilitating and documenting WEE Camp at Crest HQ.