CAIRO, Ga. (WALB) - Southern Regional Technical College partnered with Cairo High School for their first Energy Industry Expo.
11th and 12th graders from all over Southwest Georgia learned what it takes to be a lineman, hoping they’ll be able to line up and serve their community one day.
Center for Lineworker Instruction, Mentorship, and Basics, or CLIMB, put on this expo for students.
Demonstrations were held for these young minds, showing them what it’s like to work in the energy industry.
Todd Gainous is the CEO of the College and Career Academy at Cairo High School.
He told us there’s a need for workers in the energy industry.
“They did a really big hiring move in the 80’s and all those people are now get to be to retirement age, and they don’t have replacements for them, so there is a mass shortage of line workers in the industry,” said Gainous.
Students saw demonstrations of how linemen climb poles on the job and the dangers of some of the equipment they work with every day.
“We had a live wire demonstration from our local EMC, you know they’re demonstrating to the kids how they work on electric lines when they’re live or hot,” Gainous told us.
We spoke with the presenter of that demonstration, and Grady EMC marketing manager, Adam Starr.
“We’re looking for students that have that little bit of experience that can come to Grady EMC with a CDL license which is huge. And also a basic of electricity," said Starr.
Grady EMC had many services represented at the event.
Starr said he wants them to know one message after this.
“That there are great careers locally, so when they graduate from high school, they’re opportunities right here in their hometown. So we want to make sure that our students know that there are job opportunities waiting for them when they graduate,” said Starr.
Starr says high school seniors are able to go through this program while in school and earn their license during the school year.
“It’s just a good event to educate our students about the energy industry,” explained Gainous.
Gainous told us he thinks this day resonated with the students and made an impact on their futures.