The new Future Hires program from Johnson Controls guarantees jobs for select students.

Students must be enrolled in a first-year associate degree program that participates in the company’s CareerConnect.

Through its CareerConnect program, Johnson Controls donates resources and tools to partnering schools to simulate the work environment and enhance the HVAC program curriculum. Currently, eight schools participate in the CareerConnect program.

Students selected to participate in Future Hires will receive tuition aid to put toward their second-year educational costs. Graduates will work in one of six technical positions with Johnson Controls. Some students may be required to relocate for their position, and will receive a relocation package. Once in their positions, participants can expect additional training to continue their professional growth.

“We hope to attract more talent to the HVAC field by investing in promising students,” said Steve Sloane, vice president of North American service operations for Johnson Controls. “Our primary goal is to increase the number of skilled service professionals entering the work force and joining the Johnson Controls team.”

According to employment projections reported by the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, the total number of HVAC-related skilled trade positions will jump from 291,000 in 2006 to more than 317,000 by 2016.

“The Future Hires program is a great add to CareerConnect and will be a tremendous help in marketing technical career opportunities and specifically our HVACR degree program,” said Clyde Perry, Ph.D., division chairman for industrial technology at GateWay Community College in Phoenix. “When an employer is willing to support the students through scholarship money and guaranteed jobs, more students will register for our programs and strive to be a part of the Future Hires Program.”

Students must meet attendance and grade-point-average requirements and finish their degree program within two years to be eligible. Additionally, participants are expected to give Johnson Controls a two-year work commitment.

The program provides benefits to partner colleges as well. Up to five students from each CareerConnect school can be selected to participate in the program each year. In addition, partner colleges can use the program for their own recruiting efforts.

To date, eight colleges across North America have partnered with Johnson Controls through the CareerConnect program: Greenville Tech in Greenville, S.C.; Dunwoody College of Technology in Minneapolis; Milwaukee Area Technical College in Milwaukee; GateWay Community College in Phoenix and City Colleges of Chicago.