Paragon Metals, Inc. is a Tier 1 and Tier 2 supplier of automotive, truck, industrial and heavy equipment to Ford, Chrysler, General Motors, Volvo and Behr. Headquartered in Hillsdale, the company has facilities in China and Korea.
Paragon recently expanded it Michigan footprint by adding another facility in the Hillsdale Industrial Park. In order to adequately staff growth, the company worked closely with Michigan Works! by holding job fairs, posting jobs on the Pure Michigan MiTalent Connect website, and hiring several unemployed, laid off, dislocated or underemployed employees who qualified for over $21,000 in On-the-Job Training (OJT) grants.
Moreover, Paragon received a Going PRO Talent Fund grant of $18,000 to help start an electrical apprenticeship and hire 10 new employees.
Cole Breault was a recent high school graduate when he came to Michigan Works! last year. He was referred to the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Youth Program/Career Adviser to assist him in attaining his goal of obtaining employment. He lived with his mom and had been involved in the court process, but had no record that would impact him gaining employment. Upon enrolling into the WIOA program, Cole had no prior work experience.
After working to ensure Cole had a resume and other tools he would need to be successful, Cole’s career adviser found out that Paragon was interested in hiring him for a CNC operator position and informed them that Cole was enrolled in WIOA and OJT eligible.
As a result of this growth–and the Michigan Works! programs that helped make it possible–Paragon Metals and Cole Breault have both become vibrant parts of the economic resurgence in Hillsdale County.