By Mike McCormack, President and CEO, CP North America
Since CP North America first made the decision to call Prescott, Arizona the new home for our headquarters, Arizona has welcomed us with open arms and we instantly felt a connection to the people here. We have always believed that an important part of being a corporate citizen is for our leaders and engineers to get involved and give back. In today’s blog, I’ll be taking you through some of the ways CP North America has already integrated ourselves into the community.
An important reason we selected Arizona is the state’s second-to-none STEM-focused higher education system. Students at Embrey-Riddle Aeronautical University, Arizona State University, The University of Arizona, Northern Arizona University, Yavapai Community College and more, provide outstanding talent through nationally renowned engineering programs.
With the talent pipeline constrained in the technology industry, these universities along with the local high schools that funnel students to them, are integral to our future growth plans. One major initiative we’ve undertaken has been offering internships to students from higher education institutions. This gives the students the opportunity to take engage in hands-on training with some of the most advanced computing equipment on the market.
We are also putting boots-on-the-ground to develop strong relationships by visiting campuses as well as inviting professors and students to our facility so we can share our engineering expertise to future innovators. We’ve also had a number of high school classes come through our facility, giving us the opportunity to expose younger students to the cool things they can work on by pursuing a career in STEM.
Another benefit of being in Arizona is the host of organizations spread throughout the state that make ideal partners, such as the Arizona Technology Council, Prescott Innovation Center and Arizona Commerce Authority. These organizations advocate on behalf of the technology community and provide opportunities for enhanced learning and networking.
In fact, one of the first steps we took after relocating here was to become a member of the Arizona Technology Council – the premier technology trade association for the state. We plan to be actively involved in the activities and networking events the organization holds, and work with its public policy committee to advocate for technology-friendly legislation.
I was also fortunate to be named a board member of the Prescott Innovation Center, a first-class resource building serving as an attractor for retaining and creating technology jobs in Northern Arizona. Driving business to Prescott is a critical part of our state’s growth. We have thriving technology bases in Phoenix and Tucson, and while smaller in comparison, Northern Arizona including Prescott, Flagstaff and more, are growing rapidly and can be the next great innovation centers in Arizona. By serving on the board, I am helping the organization pursue its mission of attracting technology companies across every sector.
There have been a lot of benefits to moving to Arizona and we are grateful for the support we have been offered. It is now our turn to give back and we’ve been proud to collaborate with this community. We already feel at home and know that CP North America will be a pillar of Arizona technology growth and success for many years to come.