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Procter & Gamble partners with BFIT to prepare students as technicians and leaders

Posted by Jaime Crespo on Sep 22, 2016 11:40:44 AM

new_Gillette.jpgWhen Dylan Foureau, a Mechanical Engineering Technology student, learned about a new co-op program at Procter & Gamble’s (P&G) Gillette headquarters in Boston, he knew right away that this was no run-of-the-mill co-op. Aside from a lengthy application and GPA requirement, the selection process included an in-depth reasoning test and two rounds of in-person interviews with P&G managers.

Excited about the prospect of learning and earning at a Fortune 500 company, Dylan, along with 12 other students, attended Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology training sessions to prepare. College faculty coached students, gave practice tests, conducted mock interviews, and polished resumes.

Exceeding expectations, seven students passed and four accepted positions as plant technicians. What Dylan and the other students didn’t realize at the time was that they had just passed the same rigorous hiring and on-boarding process as full-time P&G employees. And, as they would soon find out, they would also be treated as regular employees, working hands-on in one the most technology-advanced manufacturing facilities in the world.


“Before coming to BFIT, I kept getting low-paying jobs. I knew I needed specialized skills to get a better paying job and to move up in my career," - Ludwig Jean


“I’m learning how to troubleshoot and operate a Cartridge Assembly Machine, which takes all the components, and through continuous motion, assembles them into cartridges,” Dylan explains. “BFIT’s manufacturing classes and machining helped a lot. CAD was a big one. It helped me understand how these parts are designed and assembled, and how it all works.”

These BFIT students are part of P&G’s effort to train plant technicians to not only serve as technical experts, but also as leaders. “All of our technicians are learning to become quality control managers,” said Aravind Menon, P&G's senior HR manager. “Technical expertise is important, but soft skills such as leadership, teamwork, and communications are even more important. That’s why we partnered with the college. We are trying to develop the whole person.”


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According to Emily Leopold, BFIT’s director of career services and industry partnerships, P&G’s management philosophy closely aligns with the college’s approach to higher education. In addition to the hands-on technical training, the college’s general education courses prepare students with soft-skills that employers demand in today’s job candidates.

“Co-ops and internships introduce students to a professional work environment,” Leopold says. “Interacting with other professionals and working in teams help a young person to grow in these areas and to acquire skills such as interpersonal communications and project management. It also helps students get clarity on what they want out of a job, what their passion is, and which direction they want to head towards.”

In its first year of inception, P&G and BFIT are both benefiting from this collaborative relationship. “We are excited about this collaborative relationship with a globally-recognized company that is less than one mile from the college,” Leopold said. “BFIT hopes to serve as a workforce pipeline for P&G and other leading manufacturers. We also want to learn and gain their input to ensure that we are teaching students the right skills that industry needs.”


Technical expertise is important, but soft skills such as leadership, teamwork, and communications are even more important. That’s why we partnered with the college. We are trying to develop the whole person." - Aravind Menon


For Ludwig Jean of Roslindale, the co-op not only means developing technical and soft skills, it also means earning good pay and securing good work references for future jobs. Emigrating to the U.S. from Haiti at the age of 16, Ludwig lives on his own with his family residing out of state. He has one more year remaining to earn his Associate of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology, before entering the workforce on a full-time basis.

“Before coming to BFIT, I kept getting low-paying jobs. I was going about it the wrong way. I knew I needed specialized skills to get a better paying job and to move up in my career,” he said. “If it wasn’t for BFIT and P&G, I would not have had this opportunity. This job has given me a sense of responsibility and trust. They treat you like a peer. Like, we belong to the team.”

Student Intern Profiles

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Jakob Arsenault

Program of Study: Mechanical Engineering Technology

Role at P&G: Jakob works on the pressing, inspection, and transformation of dies.

“We’re here to learn and help P&G in any way we can. This experience will help us no matter what path we choose to take.”

 

proctorandgamble2.jpgDylan Foureau

Program of Study: Mechanical Engineering Technology

Role at P&G: Dylan is learning to operate a machine, which assembles various components into into cartridges. 

“BFIT’s manufacturing classes and machining helped me understand how parts are designed and assembled.”

 

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Ludwig Jean

Program of Study: Mechanical Engineering Technology

Role at P&G: – Ludwig is working on a team to create a standard to decrease the loss of metal scrap.

“They give you a sense of responsibility and trust. Here, they treat you like a peer. Like we belong to the team.”

 

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Kevin Mendez

Program of Study: Electrical Technology

Role at P&G: Kevin is learning Programmable Logic Controls systems to upgrade packaging and make them more user-friendly.

“I’m learning how to program the machines. It’s difficult at first, but I’m learning every day.”

Learn More 


 

Topics: Mechanical Engineering Technology, Industry Partnerships

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