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May 29, 2024

Education Forward Arizona and Freeport-McMoRan Launch New Workforce Development Initiative

Guarantee Your Future with Freeport Application Deadline is June 21

Education Forward Arizona has teamed up with Freeport-McMoRan to engage ambitious individuals through an innovative new scholarship and job placement initiative.

The Guarantee Your Future with Freeport program will support 25 students and provide education, training, a paid summer internship, and job placement in one of six critical technical areas. Students will earn a certificate or credential from a designated community college in Arizona.

This scholarship will cover education expenses (tuition, fees, books, etc.) and assist with other cost of attendance expenses (food, housing, transportation, etc.). Upon satisfying program and employment requirements, participants will be offered a full-time position at one of Freeport-McMoRan’s nine copper and molybdenum mining operations in Arizona, Colorado or New Mexico having committed to work for the company for three years.

When chosen, participants in this new workforce development program will begin classes in August 2024 to earn a certification in one of six areas vital to the mining industry:

  • Diesel technician
  • Industrial electrical
  • Process control/instrumentation technology
  • Fixed plant maintenance/advanced manufacturing
  • Heavy equipment operations
  • Welder

Participants must be 18 years or older at time of employment with Freeport-McMoRan. The deadline to apply is Friday, June 21.

“At Freeport-McMoRan, we recognize the challenges posed by the ongoing workforce shortage across many industries, including our own, and we are committed to finding innovative solutions to address the gap,” said Tracy Bame, president of the Freeport-McMoRan Foundation and Director of Social Responsibility at Freeport-McMoRan.

“This program not only addresses our immediate workforce needs but also lays the groundwork for long-term success by investing in the development of local talent in the communities where we operate. We are particularly focused on reaching underserved and non-traditional populations to increase access to education and quality employment opportunities. We know that education is the strongest lever we have for increasing socio-economic opportunity and mobility for everyone. Investing in education and training beyond high school is critical for the resilience and prosperity of Arizona.”

To ensure student success, each scholarship recipient will be paired with an Education Forward Arizona Success Coach, as well as a mentor from Freeport-McMoRan. Training will continue during a paid summer internship where participants will get real-world experience in the industry.

“It’s an honor to join forces once again with Freeport-McMoRan to launch the Guarantee Your Future with Freeport program,” said Rich Nickel, President and CEO at Education Forward Arizona. “This initiative is a testament to Freeport-McMoRan’s commitment to fostering economic growth and opportunity in Arizona and beyond. We are proud to partner with a company that prioritizes scholarships for students in need, workforce development and the value of investing in education. Together, we are empowering individuals to gain the skills they need to thrive in high-demand industries while building a stronger, more resilient Arizona workforce for the future.” The program is open to interested in learning new in-demand skills for well-paid jobs who are willing to go to school at one of the designated community colleges in Arizona.

The launch of this workforce development initiative builds upon a longstanding relationship between Education Forward Arizona and Freeport-McMoRan, which includes the successful administration of the Freeport-McMoRan Native American Scholarship Program. Guarantee Your Future with Freeport builds on their previous $9 million investment aimed at increasing access to higher education for Native American students. Through this program, Education Forward Arizona has supported hundreds of Native American students on their journey to obtaining postsecondary certificates, associate, or bachelor’s degrees.

For more information, please contact Michelle Alcantar at malcantar@educationforwardarizona.org, (602) 509-1991 or visit the website at: Guarantee Your Future with Freeport.