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Harboring Responsibility: Empowering Students’ Leadership Skills with Clean Harbors

As North America’s leading environmental and industrial services provider, Clean Harbors is an industry leader providing services to a large span of clients including chemical, energy, manufacturing, and numerous government agencies. Focusing on caring for the environment and safely responding to emergency spills, hazardous waste management, industrial cleaning, maintenance, and recycling, Clean Harbors is truly doing their part to better protect our planet. In addition to these services, Clean Harbors also manages Safety-Kleen, a subsidiary that is North America’s largest re-refiner and recycler of used oil, and provides environmental services to commercial, industrial and automotive clients. SkillsUSA Ohio is elated to be an industry partner with Clean Harbors. Joining forces in 2019, we are incredibly excited to watch this relationship grow and flourish to benefit their company and our students.

Anticipating the Future

Tyler Tatman, Human Resources Director at Clean Harbors, gave us some insight on their growing relationship with SkillsUSA Ohio. Explaining that SkillsUSA was identified as a potential partner in early 2019, Clean Harbors made connections with several state chapters and in time, landed their focus in Ohio along with Massachusetts, Texas, and California.

“SkillsUSA Ohio welcomed me on behalf of Clean Harbors with open arms, allowing the relationship to cultivate quickly. SkillsUSA Ohio affords us the ability to attract talent coming into the workforce, and to share gaps organizations are anticipating in the future with educators and institutions.”

Working Together

Since partnering with SkillsUSA Ohio, Tatman has been able to participate on Industry Panels, in corporate partnerships, and was accepted onto the Board in 2020. SkillsUSA Ohio and Clean Harbors are anxious to participate in more events and collaborations in this upcoming post Covid-19 world, but over the last year, Tatman recognizes that SkillsUSA Ohio has provided an opportunity to engage with students and educators across Ohio. Promoting the importance of our Earth’s sustainability and environmental awareness is crucial to both Clean Harbors and SkillsUSA. Working together to facilitate knowledge, leadership, and responsibility to the leaders of tomorrow is a priority and a privilege.

Facilitating our Future

Preparing students for their future is not something we take lightly. Fostering relationships with industry leaders can be pivotal in one's career. Recognizing the experience gained from forming these partnerships can lead to future positions, mentors, and advisors. Clean Harbors can see the distinction in students who participate in the SkillsUSA Ohio program. Tatman shares:

“SkillsUSA Ohio continues to raise the bar in their efforts to prepare students for entering the workforce. While the hands on, technical skills the students are acquiring are critical, I’m most impressed with the leadership competencies and focus SkillsUSA Ohio impresses on the students. Not only does this create a feeder of top talent, but we are developing the next leaders before they accept their first job with Clean Harbors.”

When asked what unique qualities one may exhibit when working with a program participant, he added:

“Structure, leadership, creativity. The level of maturity I see in these students is second to none; and their passion is uncompromisable.”


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