Manufacturing is essential to every aspect of our world and serves as a catalyst by creating a ripple effect that impacts other important areas, including the local economy. Take a moment to think about the products that we use on a daily basis and it becomes even more evident how important manufacturing really is. From the vehicles we drive and fuel that goes in the tank to food and beverage products, the manufacturing industry and its workforce has an important role.
Below is the third and final part of an article about the manufacturing industry. This article highlights the importance and impact the manufacturing industry has to the workforce and our communities.
Not to be overlooked are the significant contributions that manufacturers make to our local communities through outreach initiatives which include charitable organizations, scholarships, food drives, environment-friendly programs as well as events to increase interest in manufacturing. These contributions show the commitment that manufacturers have to not only be part of their community but also give back.
LyondellBasell Morris Complex
As we continue to navigate the pandemic there have been many positive outcomes - an outpouring of sincere kindness from several manufacturers who are eager to make their support known in communities. Among the manufacturing companies is LyondellBasell, which donated $50,000 to We Care of Grundy County. The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted various facets of people’s lives and created hardships for many. Food banks all over the world are on the front lines of this international pandemic providing food assistance to millions facing hunger, with demand increasing every day. LyondellBasell’s donation aims to help relieve some of the strain with its donation.
“We Care of Grundy County is incredibly special to us,” Morris site manager Randy Tatum said. “Both our employees and retirees regularly volunteer their time to help stock the food pantry throughout the year. We take our role in this community seriously, and this is something we can do to help our neighbors during this difficult time."
Donating funds to supply food for those in need is just one example how LyondellBasell has responded during the pandemic. Additionally, LyondellBasell's materials are found in many applications critical to protecting and preserving health and safety such as medical devices, protective equipment, cleaning products, and various pharmaceutical applications. The company continues to supply its customers with a variety of materials including polypropylene resins, which are used to produce melt-blown fibers that provide filtration in facemasks; masterbatch products are used in breathable films for protective suits; and, polypropylene, ethylene oxide, and propylene oxide are used to make medical syringes, medical test kits, soaps, disinfectants, and many other products.
ExxonMobil Joliet Refinery
The ExxonMobil Joliet Refinery places a high priority on community partnership. Over the last 10 years, the company and its employees have contributed nearly $2 million to the United Way through their annual campaign, and have dedicated countless hours volunteering for local charitable causes. Employees’ sweat equity and personal commitment to those charities is further boosted by financial grants under the ExxonMobil Volunteer Involvement Program (VIP).
A strong commitment to education drives much of the ExxonMobil’s community outreach. Each year, ExxonMobil employees share their expertise and experience with over 1,000 local students through their Secrets in Science program, Science Expo, Big Brothers/Big Sisters Mentor 2.0 Program, and Career Conferences. These programs pique students’ interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), positioning those students for higher paying jobs, and support the long term objective of developing a workforce consistent with what our future economy will require.
ExxonMobil and its employees actively support higher education through its Educational Matching Grant Program, which matches employee donations with corporate contributions. In the last five years alone, $6.8 million has been donated to Illinois colleges and universities through the program and ExxonMobil has also recently collaborated with its contractor partners to establish the Manufacturing for the Future Fund at the Joliet Junior College.
Highlighting the more than 225 people ExxonMobil has hired in the last five years, Joliet Refinery Manager Monica Mainland expressed her appreciation for all that her colleagues do to operate the refinery with excellence, and to build strong partnerships with the community. “We operate in a challenging and dynamic business environment. As a company, we leverage our employees’ diverse backgrounds, experiences and thought to deliver creative solutions.”
Efforts like volunteerism, environment-friendly practices, and philanthropy continue to be the primary focus for manufacturing companies across the globe. At the end of the day, manufacturing is much more than making a product; it’s about the passion and purpose which provides a solid foundation for our local economy and continues to be the lifeblood of our communities.
The ExxonMobil Joliet Refinery places a high priority on community partnership. Over the last 10 years, the company and its employees have contributed nearly $2 million to the United Way through their annual campaign, and have dedicated countless hours volunteering for local charitable causes.
Calculating and configuring are all part of Loni Pierce’s day-to-day routine. Using computer-based information to analyze and repair equipment inside the plant, her days at Joliet Junior College studying Electrical Electronics Automated Systems have prepared her for her 30-year career with LyondellBasell. During the month of October, we celebrate Loni Pierce and other professionals in manufacturing who keep plants running safely and efficiently.
Discover what manufacturing careers are available with the Illinois workNet Careers, Wages & Trends Search that allows you to use career and labor market information to:
- Plan for high school and beyond.
- Complete job applications and prepare for interviews.
- Find out about expected number of job openings and how much a job could pay.
- Make a job change, relocate, or request a pay raise.
Be sure to follow our event calendar for upcoming events, Virtual Job Fairs (VJF), and social media pages to learn more about Manufacturing Month: