Get Inspired

This article originally appeared in BizTimes Media’s Guide to Stuff.

What do you want to do when you’re finished with high school? Become a doctor, a lawyer or a police officer? What about a computer-numeric-controlled (CNC) machinist, a construction manager or a diagnostic medical sonographer? What do you think of those careers? Have you heard of them?

Discover all those careers and more using Inspire Southeast Wisconsin, a web platform within Career Cruising. Explore careers you never knew existed, read about salaries, education requirements and more for those careers, see what local companies hire for those careers and talk to real people working in those positions right now in southeast Wisconsin.

For example, if you search “CNC Machinist,” you’ll see that you only need to attend a 2-year college or receive technical training to be qualified, you can earn between $11-28 per hour and there are currently more than 50 companies hiring for that career. And those are only companies who have signed up on Inspire—there’s even more than that out there! You can also explore a sample career path for a CNC Machinist and learn what it takes to move up in your career.

If you have any questions, you can reach out to a career coach. These career coaches are real people working at companies in southeast Wisconsin who have experience in the careers you’re interested. For example, Bruce is a career coach for machinists. After he graduated from high school, he completed a pattern-making apprenticeship and advanced to a manager position in a pattern shop. He moved on to start his own pattern-making business in 1985 while managing a plastic molding company. He is now president of the pattern-making shop and has 20 employees with customers nation-wide.

“We have so many good-paying career options at our local companies, and we want to make sure you know what is out there,” said Anthony Christian, manufacturing and engineering teacher at Arrowhead Union High School. “Inspire can connect you to industries in our area and help you make educated decisions about what your options are, and what you can do now to reinforce your career plans.”

Tailored Label Products in Menomonee Falls produces unique, custom label products and specialized adhesive solutions to be used on products such as cars, outdoor power equipment, medical machines and more. The company is always hiring people to help run its presses and offers training opportunities, competitive pay and benefits.

“Inspire allows you to learn about Tailored Label Products and the technologies we use, as well as the many career paths and employee development benefits we offer for growing and advancing your career at TLP,” said Nicole Richard, director of human resources at TLP. “Through Inspire, you can connect with one of our team members to arrange a tour of our facility, get one-on-one advice about pursuing a career in the print and label industry and even find out about current internship and scholarship opportunities. Inspire truly is a great way for you to connect with companies in southeast Wisconsin.”

Aries Industries in Waukesha manufactures robotic inspection and rehabilitation equipment for underground infrastructure, like pipelines and water wells. The company is growing here and abroad and is looking for young people to join the team.

“We are committed to Wisconsin and Waukesha County,” said Nick Kroll, CEO of Aries Industries. “We make cool stuff for our world’s underground pipeline infrastructure and we are a good company offering growth opportunities. A key to our growth is securing young, talented people like you who are willing to work in areas like CNC machining, welding, electronics and engineering.”

Inspire interfaces with Career Cruising, so you can use the tools together to plan your future and see what opportunities are waiting for you. You can save certain careers into your “Favorites” so you can compare the benefits of each one and decide which one you like best. You can schedule a time to meet in-person with someone working in the industry right now and shadow them for a day to see what it’s really like to work in that career. Ask if your teacher or school counselor has a login for you—once you have that, the world is literally at your fingertips.