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Developing the Workforce: Moving Up

Karissa Dums

Developing the Workforce: Moving Up

Spring 2020

Mar 18, 2020

A workplace training initiative led to a promotion for Karissa Dums.

For six years, Karissa Dums enjoyed working as a hair stylist, but something was missing. “I liked my job; however, I wanted to become more of a problem solver,” says the 30-year-old Kewaskum native.

Dums then landed an entry-level position at Muza Metal Products in Oshkosh to help pay the bills while considering a new career direction. Within three months, a manager approached her about an opportunity to learn skills as a press brake operator.

Thanks to a Fast Forward Grant from the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development, Dums completed a training initiative with Fox Valley Technical College to learn how to produce metal parts from operating specialized equipment.

“I ran three different machines and created something out of nothing,” adds Dums. “The Tech’s instructors were thorough, and they showed me how to complete several tasks.” After a year as a press brake operator, Dums accepted a promotion at Muza in the company’s customer service department.

“I would not have advanced so quickly in my career without working first as a press brake operator,” concludes Dums.

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