Loudon Co. boat company and high school partner to avoid labor shortage

Loudon High School and Malibu Boats have partnered to recruit students to work for the company in an effort to avoid the labor shortage.

It’s something neither Loudon High nor Malibu, the boat manufacturing company, have done before. On May 5 a couple students signed their intent to work for the company, similar to a college sports signing day.

Brady Fields is a soon-to-be graduate at Loudon High. He’d thought about going to college, but didn’t feel like that was the best fit for him. Fields has a cousin who works for Malibu.

“I feel like it’s going to be a good career for me,” Fields said.

Connor Radford is a rising senior who will be a part of the work-based learning program. He will work for Malibu over the summer and, in the fall, balance classes and working there.

“Being able to put those skills to right into work, right into that out of high school. I think it’s beneficial and give them the opportunity to grow with the company and advance with the company,” Malibu Human Resources Manager, Shelly Strickland, said.

Strickland said the company produces 24 boats a day and has 750 employees in Loudon.

“This is really an opportunity for them to shine and see first-hand what opportunities are here locally for them,” Loudon County’s Economic Development Director, Jack Qualls, explained.

Source: WVLT, by Ashley Bohle

The East Tennessee Economic Development Agency markets and recruits business for the 15 counties in the greater Knoxville-Oak Ridge region of East Tennessee. Visit www.eteda.org

Published May 17, 2022