Klein Tools and Home Builders Institute partner for celebration across North America of the next generation of skilled trade workers
LINCOLNSHIRE, IL, April 18, 2022 – With a longstanding commitment to encouraging the next generation of trade professionals, Klein Tools, the 165-year-old leader in hand tools, today announced the first global celebration of future trades men and women. Working in partnership with the Home Builders Institute (HBI), the inaugural International Signing Day event will take place on April 21, 2022, with events across North America.
NFL quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, a vocal supporter for the skilled trades, will be joined by his father, Tony, a recently retired career electrician, as part of the International Signing Day. The two will make virtual appearances at Signing Day events, showing their continued support for those taking the next step at advancing their career in the skilled trades.
“Jimmy and I have partnered with Klein Tools and HBI to celebrate the lifechanging decision these students are making as part of International Signing Day,” said Tony Garoppolo. “This is a cause that is incredibly important to my family. We know first-hand what a viable career working in the trades can be, and we want to celebrate the next generation of students making that commitment.”
As part of the International Signing Day event, Klein Tools and HBI, with the support of The Home Depot Foundation, will host events for high school students who are looking to pursue careers in the skilled trades. As part of the events, high school seniors will receive recognition from their school administration, peers, friends, and family as they sign a letter of intent for an apprenticeship program, similar to letters signed by high school athletes looking to make the jump to college athletics. The day’s events will be filled with guest speakers, demonstrations, and more.
“The importance of an event like International Signing Day cannot be understated, as there is a very noticeable skills gap in the trade sector,” said Greg Palese, Vice-President of Marketing at Klein Tools. “If we don’t begin actively recruiting a new generation of trade workers, America will be faced with an insurmountable workforce need in the immediate future.”
Addressing the looming gap in skilled professional trade workers is something that Klein Tools has devoted time and resources to in recent years, so much so that the company recently issued a report titled “Dark by 2050.” The report examines the future of the United States over the next three decades if it does not fill the sizable need for trades men and women.
Specifically looking at the need for electricians, the report identified the median age for line workers in the U.S. is 40 years old, which would indicate that many are beginning to age out of the profession. The report also suggested that if current hiring and retirement trends continue and remain unaddressed, there will be a shortage of nearly 300,000 line workers nationwide by 2050.
“We are in a labor shortage crisis which not only impacts home builders, but it also affects consumers and communities everywhere,” said HBI President and CEO Ed Brady. “The more a shortage of skilled workers grows, the more housing and homeownership become less affordable. Events like International Signing Day are critical to help excite the next generation of trade workers and show them that their commitment to these fields will ultimately play a crucial role in helping to shape the future of the U.S.”
For HBI, which operates and licenses over 500 programs in 47 states, this is the latest effort by the organization to show its support for skilled trade workers. Earlier this year, the company announced an expansion of its partnership with The Home Depot Foundation as part of Path to Pro trades training program.
More details on International Signing Day, including statistics on the skills gap, opportunities available in the trades and cost comparisons between trade school and college can be found at www.kleintools.com/nsd.
For more information on Klein Tools, please visit www.kleintools.com, and for more information on HBI or to learn how to get involved, please visit www.hbi.org.
About Klein Tools
Since 1857 Klein Tools, a family-owned and operated company, has been designing, developing and manufacturing premium-quality, professional-grade hand tools. The majority of Klein tools are manufactured in plants throughout the United States and are the No. 1 choice among professional electricians and other tradespeople. Klein is a registered trademark of Klein Tools, Inc. For more information, visit www.kleintools.com
About the Home Builders Institute
The Home Builders Institute (HBI) trains skilled workers for the building industry. Through pre-apprenticeship training, certification programs and job placement services, HBI provides graduates—high school students, at-promise youth, veterans, transitioning military personnel, justice-involved youth and adults, and displaced workers—with the skills and experience they need to build a career and change their lives. Visit hbi.org for more information.