Wisconsin yard says it’s struggling to fill jobs


A northern Wisconsin shipyard - one of the region's largest and best-paying employers - is struggling to find graduates to fill jobs.

Marinette Marine Corp. officials told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel they’re not only trying to attract new graduates, they’re also offering to pay $12 an hour for them to undergo a training program at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College that earns graduates college credits.

Company officials said that despite the lack of interest they’re holding 40 positions open in the training program for welders and other shipyard jobs because they hope to attract recent local high school graduates.

The company has reached out to nine high schools to find candidates, but so far only seven recent graduates have applied for training that begins in July. That's in an area where about half of the graduates go on to college.

A typical employee at the shipyard can earn $30,000 to $40,000 a year. With overtime, some earn more than $60,000. Yet many companies are struggling to persuade young people to enter the skilled trades, including welding, pipe fitting and electrical work.

To fill jobs, companies recruit each other's employees, said Mark Kaiser, president of Lindquist Machine Corp. in Green Bay.

"If we don't find enough talent, the fact is we are not going to be able to grow our businesses," Kaiser said.

Marinette Marine has added 600 jobs in the last 12 months, largely for work contracted to build Navy ships, but also for other projects. It has hired people from across the country, but still worries about attrition as older employees retire.

Click here for the full report.


Service to Send $1 Billion to State Wildlife Agencies

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will distribute funds to states to bolster conservation projects and recreational opportunities.

Quick Hits: March 1, 2021

Safe Harbor Newport Shipyard adds SF Marina floating dock array.

Patrick Supports Care Camps

The outdoors camps for children with cancer receive a first-time gift and marketing support from Patrick Industries.

Brunswick Creates Autonomy Position

The company promoted Jason Arbuckle to marine autonomy technology lead, with a focus on incorporating autonomous and driver-assist features into its product line.


Star brite introduces Marine Descaling Fluid—a powerful, easy way to descale raw water-cooled systems using recirculation. It saves time, energy, and a lot of headache, allowing for a faster, cost-effective return-to-service for equipment.

NAW Elects 2021 Officers

Michael Medart of Medart Engine and Marine takes the helm as chairman of the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors board.

Caterpillar Names Global Manager

Alex Berg will lead the manufacturer’s pleasure craft and yachting segment.