Growing Medina County's Economy
When it comes to high-quality living, look no further than Medina County. For the past two decades, it has been the fastest growing county in Northern Ohio. With a school system at the head of its class, a diverse business base and a historically low unemployment rate, it’s no wonder that the County’s communities have obtained accolades such as Money magazine’s “Top 100 Places to Live” and Ohio Magazine’s “Best Hometown in Ohio.”
A major contributor to the County’s high quality of life is its thriving manufacturing plants. Sitting at the midway point between Cleveland and Akron, Medina County can boast having more than 9,000 manufacturing jobs at 218 companies. Industry giants, such as RPM International and MTD Products, call the County home for their global headquarters while other companies choose to set up shop for division operations in the area.
But with all these jobs comes a great amount of responsibility, and that’s where Medina County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) comes into play. It’s no secret that workforce is the biggest challenge facing businesses today. By working to attract, retain and expand businesses, MCEDC takes proactive steps to address workforce issues, both today and into the future.
MCEDC’s initiatives include Job Opportunity Tours that take unemployed or underemployed residents to visit manufacturing businesses. On these tours, participants learn about career choices by seeing what these jobs look like firsthand. For some, it’s their first exposure to this type a work, and many end up applying for jobs.
In October 2017, MCEDC organized the second Made in Medina County Expo to celebrate manufacturing. Put together on odd-numbered years, the expo brings together students, business leaders and residents to showcase the incredible variety of operations based in Medina County. Hands-on demonstrations include robotics and virtual welding, and attendees are given opportunities to manufacture a product.
In partnership with Community Action Wayne Medina, MCEDC provided a Workplace Stability Training class to approximately 30 companies in the area. Areas of focus included employee retention and evaluation of how employee performance, household stability and profitability are related. The companies identified techniques to increase workforce stability and develop an action plan suitable for the culture of each individual business.
MCEDC works closely with County schools to help students understand local job opportunities. In addition to organizing high school job fairs, Corporation staff sits on two Career Based Intervention Advisory Boards to provide guidance on connecting students at risk for not graduating with career training opportunities. Currently, more than 70 percent of residents leave the County for work. There is also a number of residents who are not in the workforce at all. Through community outreach efforts like WorkLocal.net, MCEDC is striving to keep workers in the county and successfully place everyone in the workforce. The WorkLocal website promotes job openings to guide residents toward opportunities in their own backyard.
NEXUS Gas Transmission (NEXUS) is proud to partner with and commends MCEDC for its efforts to better a labor market that already performs ahead of many municipalities nationwide. Manufacturing has always been the backbone of a healthy economy, and NEXUS is grateful for the opportunity to assist MCEDC in its initiatives. Together, NEXUS and MCEDC are leading the way for a stable economy in Medina County.
“We are grateful for the support and donation that NEXUS has provided,” said MCEDC Executive Director Bethany Dentler. “Not only did the dollars help us carry out last year’s initiatives, but we will also be using the funds for some upcoming events in 2018.”
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