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When we founded Primary Talent Partners, aside from the obvious business goals, we had another, more personal goal in mind: to increase minority candidate flow into the contingent labor programs we support and break down the barriers that contribute to the lack of Black representation in science, technology, engineering and math occupations.

It requires a fairly impressive blind spot not to notice that there is a severe, generational issue with minority representation in STEM degrees in universities and related careers across the country. Studies show that over 40% of Black STEM students drop out of school or change majors compared to just over 20% of their white peers. Two main factors contribute to this: a lack of adequate funding to complete their degree and a lack of a “feeling of belonging.” Year after year, these two pervasive threats continually challenge, impede, and ultimately reduce the number of Black applicants in STEM-related occupations.

Even in areas like computing jobs, which have enjoyed considerable growth in recent years, Black workers remain severely underrepresented. Black workers comprise just 9% of those in STEM occupations, and that figure declines to 5% when focusing specifically on engineering. What’s even more troubling is that there has been no statistically significant change to that percentage since 2016.

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Besides being a stark indictment of broader societal inequities, the current climate of diversity in STEM comes to the detriments of its very employers. Year after year, the scientific literature connecting diverse workforces to increased performance (on a variety of metrics) grows both in size and legitimacy. Here are just a few convincing findings from recent studies:

Staffing firms are in a unique position to change this reality, and many in the industry have been developing programs to do just that — many of which were highlighted in SIA’s DE&I Influencers list. We are doing our part. In fact, since our founding in 2019, Primary Talent Partners set out to treat the problem rather than the symptoms that so many minorities experience along the way to earning a degree in STEM and help our clients enjoy benefits like those cited above. We are looking to   effect change for diverse groups looking to enter into the field as well as to encourage interest in STEM early in young people. Here are some of the initiatives that comprise our diversIT programs.

diversIT Scholars. This program addresses the common obstacles Black students encounter when enrolled in a STEM program. Through several partnerships with major Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), we provide students with critical mentorship with Black professionals in the STEM field and meaningful internship opportunities with clients, all funded by Primary Talent Partners.

Additionally, to ensure each student in our program has every opportunity to graduate, we work with our clients to award co-branded scholarships. We also provide stipends especially in locations with above-average cost of living. Our first four diversIT Scholars graduated this spring; dozens more are on track to do the same.

diversIT Recruiting. We’ve intentionally built and refined our recruiting platform to attract the top minority talent in the marketplace. By establishing unique, innovative sourcing channels, our team is able to sustain a highly qualified minority talent pool that simply can’t be found on job boards.

diversIT Enrichment. In an intentional effort to tackle the problem at its source, we launched our diversIT Enrichment program to increase STEM awareness and encourage consideration for a career in the field for K-12 students.

We hope this helps catalyze a greater movement where traditionally underrepresented groups are finally able to enjoy the same opportunities in STEM as their peers.

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Current opportunities to join us

Warehouse Associate Various shifts from $17.00 per hour + bonus New Albany, IN Sazerac_New_Albany_IN 11b9fea5-a15a-4cf8-8d95-4ef8764efaeb New Albany Indiana United States 707 Pillsbury Lane, New Albany, Indiana, United States, 47150 Join Shiftfillers and become part of the dedicated team that gets products and orders ready for our client’s customers. You will be processing, preparing, picking, packing and shipping customer orders. If you like a fast-paced, physical position t...
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Production Associate Perm. with benefits $18 per hour 2:30 P.M. Start. JELD-WEN. N. Springfield, VT Direct_Hire 879106 Springfield Vermont United States North Springfield, Springfield, Vermont, United States Role overview Preparation of frames and jambs used in the pre-hanging process Prepare, machine, and hang wood and fiberglass doors Use pneumatic and hand tools to assemble door units Learn the operation of the production line machinery Palletize, ...
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Electronic Technician Full time with benefits $20 - $23 per hour Start 7:00 A.M – 3:30 P.M Schlumberger Sugar Land, TX. Direct_Hire 878122 Sugar Land Texas United States Sugar Land, Texas, United States, 77478 Perform technical duties in one of the functional areas: electronic, mechanical, or systems. Completes tests, measurements, operations, or process controls that are usually routine in nature, and very few nonstandard situations occur. Analyzes dat...
Mechanical Technician Full time with benefits $19 - $21 per hour Start 7 A.M. – 3:30 P.M. Schlumberger Sugar land, TX. Direct_Hire 878110 Sugar Land Texas United States Sugar Land, Texas, United States, 77478 Perform technical duties in one of the functional areas: electronic, mechanical, or systems. Completes tests, measurements, operations, or process controls that are usually routine in nature, and very few nonstandard situations occur. Analyzes dat...
Electrical Assembler Full time with benefits $20 - $23 per hour Start 7:00 A.M – 3:30 P.M Schlumberger Sugar Land, TX. Direct_Hire 878109 Sugar Land Texas United States Sugar Land, Texas, United States, 77478 Perform technical duties to support manufacturing activities to the functional areas: electronic, mechanical, or systems. Analyzes and ensures the product, process meets standards. Troubleshoot and resolve products, processes related to assemblies...
Production Associate (Windows) Perm. with benefits $19.50 - $21 per hour 6:00 A.M. Start JELD-WEN Grinnell, IA. Direct_Hire 876858 Grinnell Iowa United States Grinnell, Iowa, United States Role overview Preparation of frames and jambs used in the pre-hanging process Prepare, machine, and hang wood and fiberglass doors Use pneumatic and hand tools to assemble door units Learn the operation of the production line machinery Palletize, ...
Production Associate Perm. with benefits $18 per hour 4:00 A.M. Start. JELD-WEN. N. Springfield, VT Direct_Hire 876852 Springfield Vermont United States North Springfield, Springfield, Vermont, United States Role overview Preparation of frames and jambs used in the pre-hanging process Prepare, machine, and hang wood and fiberglass doors Use pneumatic and hand tools to assemble door units Learn the operation of the production line machinery Palletize, ...
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