Water Council strives to bring student talent and company leaders together

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The Water Council education and talent committee will host a connecting talent through internships event on Tuesday, March 23 from 2:30 until 5 p.m at the Manpower Headquarters, 100 Manpower Place, in Milwaukee.

The Water Council education and talent committee will host a connecting talent through internships event on Tuesday, March 23, from 2:30 until 5 p.m at the Manpower Inc. headquarters, 100 Manpower Place, in Milwaukee. The event will bring together executives from some of the area’s water companies and students interested in career opportunities and internships within the water technology industry.
“Our whole goal here is to get the word out to these students that there are internships and ultimately jobs in Milwaukee and specifically in the water industry,” said Rich Meeusen, chief executive officer of Brown Deer-based Badger Meter Inc. “As a company I want to find the talent I need here, and the more kids that are getting into the water courses and interested in the water industry the better it is going to be for all of us.”
According to Meeusen, Badger Meter created three internships last summer and will expand that number to five this year.
“I know many companies in the water industry are really stepping up,” Meeusen said.  
According to Dean Amhaus, executive director of the Water Council, the organization is really striving for economic development within the water industry in the area, and part of that goal is talent development in the future leaders of the industry.
“We want to grow the economic base of the business already in the area, but we also want to be able to attract new business to the area and part of making both those things happen is growing and developing the talent in the area and getting them interested in starting careers here,” Amhaus said.
Students who attend the event will have the opportunity to meet with and learn from company executives as well as students who have already completed a water industry internship, said Steve Glynn, owner of Milwaukee-based Spreenkler and one of the event’s organizers.
“People are really getting excited about the potential of the water industry in this area,” Glynn said. “The students are no different. We designed this event to put the students who are interested in those careers in front of executives who have those opportunities available, and we wanted to do it in an informal manner to help them get excited about the opportunity.
Companies like Badger Meter Inc., A.O. Smith, Pentair, Watertech of America, Manpower, Veolia and Northern Lake Service will have representation at the event, along with some newer Wisconsin water companies, Glynn said.
“I think the key here for me is the way you can attract companies to the area is by having two things, synergy and talent,” Meeusen said. “In order for companies to really consider relocating here they want companies they can work with and talent. Why do all the successful financial people find their way to New York? Because that’s where the talent is. Why do students interested in computer technology flock to Silicon Valley? Because that’s where the technology is. We want Milwaukee to be thought of like that for water technology, and we want students in the area to know that they can have a good career here.” 
For more information on the event visit: www.meetup.com/M7Intern/calendar/12831664

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