Grainger Study Reveals Optimism About Skilled & Certified Workforce Careers

CHICAGO — Grainger, No. 2 on Industrial Distribution's Big 50 List, has released results of a survey aimed at understanding the attitudes, motivations and opinions of those pursuing careers in the skilled trades, supply chain management and public safety.

Grainger surveyed 218 recipients of its Tools for Tomorrow scholarship and found 80 percent have an optimistic view on the long-term potential for their career choices, with their main motivations for entering their fields being a desire to work with their hands (70 percent), career growth potential (53 percent) and financial stability (50 percent).

However, of those surveyed, more than 40 percent said they decided to enter the skilled trades, supply chain management or public safety workforce as part of a career change, while only 28 percent said they did so as their career path immediately following high school graduation.

“Grainger offers its Tools for Tomorrow scholarship because we understand the importance of having enough trained people to meet the employment demands in the key industries supported by this program,” said Dan Goudey, Grainger Senior Director, North American Operating Model. “We also want to show careers in the skilled trades, supply chain management and public safety are viable options for those graduating high school who haven’t yet determined what’s next. Community colleges are well-suited to train skilled and certified workers, and we encourage those looking for their first career path to consider taking advantage of the resources available to them.”

In fact, the survey found that after graduating with an associate’s degree or certificate in the skilled trades, supply chain management and public safety from a community college, nearly 90 percent of those surveyed secured jobs in their fields within six months and 76 percent of those surveyed were confident their career choice will provide long-term financial stability.

“Through this survey, we learned there is a great opportunity to help high school students in our communities find a successful, fulfilling career that’s right for them, and we’re proud to play a role in helping provide guidance, funding and tools to make that happen,” said Goudey.

About the Tools for Tomorrow Scholarship Program Each year, Grainger works with the American Association of Community Colleges to offer two scholarships of $2,000 each at participating community colleges in the U.S. The scholarships offer financial assistance for tuition and books to students working toward an associate’s degree or certificate in skilled trade, supply chain management and public safety programs. In addition to the scholarship, Grainger provides tools to students after they graduate to help them launch a successful career.

Since 2006, Grainger has donated more than $4 million to support technical education. Half of the scholarships offered are earmarked for veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces.

To learn more about the Tools for Tomorrow scholarship program and see a list of participating colleges, visit

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