(Photo of Ingalls Signing Day from Ingalls Shipbuilding website)
The Pascagoula-based company hosted a “signing day” ceremony this week where the students received an offer of employment at the shipyard.
Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula has long been a partner with local area school districts in recruiting and training students to join their workforce. This week, the company hosted a signing day ceremony for the 2023 graduates of its Shipbuilder Academy program.
Successfully completing the Academy’s one-year specialized career technical education program, 23 high school seniors were offered full-time positions at Ingalls Shipbuilding where they will begin their careers after graduation as shipbuilders.
The high school seniors were honored much like high school athletes announcing a choice of college. Each student received and signed a contingent offer of employment highlighting their new position at the shipyard.
“Today we celebrate the students who have committed to a technical career at Ingalls Shipbuilding and will build upon our 85-year legacy of building the most mission-ready ships for our country,” Ingalls Shipbuilding Vice President of Operations Donny Dorsey said in a release from the company. “Their decision to pursue hands-on training and technical skills while in high school is a testament to their innovative spirit and we applaud their dedication to learning the critical skills needed to have a rewarding career in their chosen trade.”
The Ingalls Shipbuilder Academy was established in 2016 with a mission to provide students with a strong foundation in the maritime industry and to fill shipbuilding positions at Ingalls. The program, now in its eighth year, expanded from Jackson County to Harrison County in 2019 where it is entering its fifth year.
Shipbuilder Academy enrolls students from 13 different high schools along the Gulf Coast, including Biloxi, Gulfport, West Harrison, Long Beach, Pass Christian, Pascagoula, Gautier, Moss Point, East Central, Vancleave, St. Martin, Ocean Springs and Alma Bryant.
In total, 355 students have successfully completed the program and obtained National Center for Construction Education and Research certifications.