October 3, 2014
GRANITEVILLE — U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., said it’s important to highlight the success stories throughout the state, which is why he took a tour Thursday of the local MTU America plant in Graniteville.
“These are success stories that focus on legislation that I’ve sponsored, like MTU’s apprenticeship program,” Scott said. “That program is successful and understanding that mix of their employee base is very important, as well as what they’re doing from a military standpoint.”
Jens Baumeister, the director of operations, said Scott was able to tour a top notch manufacturing facility building with high quality diesel engines in the heart of the CSRA.
“He has seen the importance of our highly skilled workforce, which is the foundation for our success in this area,” Baumeister said. “With our new apprenticeship program, we believe we found a missing link in the educational system.”
Baumeister said that missing link is giving high school graduates the opportunity to work in a manufacturing environment, after finishing high school with an industrial mechanic basic degree, or to go to college to enhance their education.
“We were really excited to show Sen. Scott what is needed to build these engines in the U.S. and the challenges we are facing. So we were proud to have him here.”
Scott added that from an energy perspective, he was also able to grasp MTU’s importance.
“I’m on the Energy Committee, so understanding and appreciating how effective MTU is in the energy sector was very important as well,” he said.
Scott’s tour of MTU was one of many stops this week and through next week. On Thursday, he toured Dorchester, Greenville, Aiken and Charleston counties.
“Frankly, we hit all 46 counties last year and we’re going to do it all again this year,” he said.