MHS Youth Apprenticeship banquet honors Student Stars for excellence
BY TINA L. SCOTT
The Merrill High School (MHS) Youth Apprenticeship Program held their annual banquet on May 4, 2023, at the Eagles Club in Merrill.
Youth Apprenticeship (YA) students, employers, and the families and friends of YA students gathered together to celebrate another successful year and honor Student Stars who demonstrated “excellence in developing career readiness skills at their worksite” said Linda Murray, YA Coordinator at MHS.
This year 83 students participated in the school’s YA program.
Of those 83, 12 students were honored as Student Stars at the banquet. Those students, along with the businesses where they worked, were recognized at the banquet:
• Nathan Brzoznowski – Goetsch’s Welding and Machine
• Catherine Moyer – Walmart
• Tanner Hannemann – Brickner’s Park City
• Austin Mosher – Geiss Meat Service
• Taylor Jacobson – Johnsons of Merrill
• Jordan Klug – Bob’s West 64
• Truman Shull – Baumann Farms, LLP
• Sierra Moore – Bell Tower Residence Assisted Living
• Gage Lassa – Baumann Farms, LLP
• Alayna Pozorski – Mitchell Metal Products
• Angelina Esparza – Polka Dotted Pie
• Sawyer Marnholtz – J&J Lee Construction
“The Youth Apprenticeship Program is a rigorous one or two-year elective, statewide program for high school juniors and seniors that combines academic and technical instruction with mentored, paid, on-the-job learning that makes a real world connection for students,” Murray said. “Youth Apprentices work a minimum of 450 hours at their YA worksite each year of their program and take related high school or college classes to enhance their worksite experiences.”
“They earn one credit for each semester they successfully participate in YA, and at the completion of their apprenticeship, they receive a Certificate of Occupational Proficiency from the State of Wisconsin, an accomplishment that is recognized by both employers and colleges alike.”
There are 11 program areas available through Wisconsin’s Youth Apprenticeship Program:
• Agriculture, food, and natural resources
• Architecture and construction
• Art, a/v technology, and communications
• Health science
• Hospitality, lodging, and tourism
• Information technology
• Science, technology, engineering, and math
• Transportation, distribution, and logistics
“Employers hire apprentices for a variety of reasons, including being able to recruit potential employees and shape the quality of their workforce, develop partnerships with MHS, build great employee loyalty, and create positive PR by helping youth with employment and education,” Murray said.
“Students become apprentices because they earn a paycheck while learning from skilled professionals,” she said. “Also, they become more organized and efficient with their time, increase career awareness and improve future employability, and develop the necessary skills needed for entry-level employment and, in some program areas, begin working towards a Registered Apprenticeship.”
For more information, or if businesses or students would like to participate in the YA program for the 2023-24 academic year, contact Murray at 715.536.4594, Ext. 18039.