MDOT Secretary Recruits Colleges, Trade Schools to Help Marylanders Seize Career Opportunities

by MCS Staff

Per MDOT: Maryland has a world-class transportation network built and maintained by countless employees who developed their skills in apprentice programs, internships and trade schools. At a Skilled Trades Partnering event Thursday hosted by the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), Secretary James F. Ports, Jr., told representatives of community colleges, trade schools and high school vocational programs that their institutions are essential in providing the skilled labor for MDOT’s future.

Today, Secretary Ports said, MDOT has hundreds of skilled worker positions available for mechanics, electricians, carpenters, masons, plumbers, HVAC technicians, aircraft service workers and others. There are more openings at MDOT than people to fill them, he said.

“I know the importance of our skilled trades, and I know it’s possible to begin in a skilled trades position and work your way up,” Secretary Ports said. “In all honesty, it’s been my personal mission to make connections and build partnerships with skilled trades educators to grow the next generation of MDOT employees.”

The Skilled Trades Partnering event, held at MDOT Headquarters in Hanover, was an opportunity for MDOT to work with organizations involved in workforce development to connect and share ideas on how to partner to place students into MDOT positions. Secretary Ports appealed to institutions to focus on training young men and women to meet the growing demand at MDOT, and help them discover careers with competitive salaries and benefits that include health coverage, retirement, paid leave, tuition reimbursement and more.

Secretary Ports said trends affecting agencies and industries across the country – including turnover, early retirement, increased competition and the “great resignation” spurred by the pandemic – have increased the need to recruit and train new workers.

“We’re ready to do our part to build a productive skilled trades workforce by working with all of you to bridge the skilled trades gap,” Secretary Ports said. “Let’s work together to help you grow your business, increase enrollment and get more young adults interested in skilled trades.”

​MDOT has a number of existing apprentice and internship programs, including the MDOT Fellows Program at the University of Maryland Baltimore County and the Morgan State University Graduate School Internship Program. See more about those two programs here. In addition, MDOT State Highway Administrationoperates a student internship program in fields from engineering and construction to data analysis and environmental science, and each summer MDOT Maryland Aviation Administration hosts  a paid Summer Youth Initiative internship for Baltimore youth at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport.


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