SoCalGas Launches New Workforce Development Initiative

SoCalGas Launches New Workforce Development Initiative

The initiative opens doors for new talent, promoting a diverse and inclusive team

In support of Military Appreciation Month, SoCalGas and the Utility Workers Union of America (UWUA) are proud to announce a new partnership with the Department of Defense’s (DoD) Skillbridge program to hire qualified veterans and provide training resources through the UWUA’s Utility Workers Military Assistance Program (UMAP). The program is specifically designed for service members to gain civilian work experience through various industry trainings or internships during the individual’s last 180 days of military service prior to separation. The goal is to help bridge the gap of those who are retiring from active military service and transitioning into civilian life. An estimated 200,000 service members transition out of the military annually nationwide. SoCalGas will be the first utility provider in California to have a training-to-placement program with the DoD.  In addition to becoming a Skillbridge provider, SoCalGas is now a DoD-registered veteran employer partner. 

“SoCalGas is excited for all the new talent and opportunities this initiative may offer, it’s going to open doors for a lot of great potential employees.” said David Buczkowski, vice president of gas distribution at SoCalGas. “Additionally, our company has always been a proud supporter of the veteran community and continues to be dedicated and committed towards hiring, training and retaining military veterans. We thank the Utility Workers Union of America, as well as our entire Union leadership, for their partnership and for the opportunity to assist our veterans in helping them develop skills towards job security and stability.”

“We are excited about this new partnership that expands UMAP’s national impact and our ability to make a difference among southern California veterans,” said Richard Passarelli, director of veterans affairs and workforce development at the Utility Workers Union of America. “This program is a hand up and not a handout. Expanding UMAP opportunities with SoCal Gas and Local 132 offers veterans a clear path forward beyond their military service toward a good, family supporting career in the utility sector.” 

In addition to participation in Skillbridge -- SoCalGas, the UWUA, and International Chemical Workers Union (ICWUC) are creating new jobs that will expand diversity and inclusion within the company. This initiative is expected to remove previous requirements and allow the utility to hire from a larger pool of applicants across all genders, age, and mobility. Beginning in the second half of 2021, applicants for this newly created Leak Survey Technician job in SoCalGas’ Distribution sector will no longer be subject to the 100 lb. lifting requirement. The utility is planning to recruit and hire for new these positions within the Distribution sector over the next several years. 

“Our new workforce development initiative with SoCalGas is an extremely exciting venture that will open new doors for hundreds of qualified and interested individuals who are searching for ways to advance their careers,” said Eric Hoffman, President of UWUA Local 132, Chair of the Joint Steering Committee at SoCalGas, and Vice President of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor. “One of the key goals of this initiative is to develop and retain diverse talent, drawing in veterans, and preparing them for long-term careers at the company.”

These workforce development initiatives not only open the door to a well-paying career, they also allow SoCalGas the opportunity to broaden our employee talent pipeline and create an even more diverse and inclusive leadership team.