Johnson Controls Inc. has teamed up with DeKalb Technical College in Clarkston, Ga., to attract and groom the next generation of HVAC service technicians through the CareerConnect program.

Under this national program, Johnson Controls donates resources and tools to select partnering schools to enhance the program curriculum. The company’s contributions to DeKalb Technical College will include learning materials, instruction from industry experts, faculty development opportunities and community relations outreach.

Johnson Controls will also team with the school through career fairs, recruiting events and other initiatives to increase awareness of the career opportunities available to skilled technicians. The market value of the CareerConnect program to DeKalb Technical College is more than $15,000 over three years.

Students enrolled in DeKalb’s air-conditioning and commercial refrigeration program and the associate of applied science degree program are also eligible for the Johnson Controls Future Hires Program. This opportunity provides exceptional students with tuition aid and a guaranteed job with Johnson Controls upon graduation. Up to five students from each CareerConnect partner school are selected annually.

“The partnership is beneficial to both the school and the students,” said Jeryll McWhorter, air-conditioning technology instructor at DeKalb Technical College. “We gain access to cutting-edge learning materials and some of our most promising students receive an employment offer with the industry’s global leader, Johnson Controls.”

The overall goal of CareerConnect is to meet the growing needs of the HVACR industry by increasing the number of skilled program graduates entering the work force.

“These programs allow Johnson Controls to develop a pipeline of recruits to meet the needs of our growing service business,” said Peter Geist, service branch manager for Johnson Controls. “In addition, we shorten our recruiting cycle, reduce our recruiting costs and benefit from increased productivity of new hires.”

To date, DeKalb Technical College is one of 10 CareerConnect partnerships that Johnson Controls has established with community colleges in North America.