Short Line Connector - Fall 2016 - 19


SHORT LINES:

THE NEXT
GENERATION

ASLRRA and short line leaders are stepping up to prepare young
professionals to be ready to take the helm in the industry.

By Amy Krouse and Kathy Keeney

ONE OF THE MOST pressing issues facing railroad managers today is recruiting,
retaining and developing the future short
line workforce. Long-time railroading
expertise is walking out the door as baby
boomers start to retire in larger numbers.
The Railroad Retirement Board reports
that 50 percent of employees with 30 or
more years of experience are expected to
retire each year. Those with less than 30
years are retiring at a rate of 13 percent.
Short lines aren't sitting down on the
job, though. There is plenty of work being
done to address this challenge within the
industry and at individual railroads.

Early Engagement
Many short lines have formal summer and year-round college internship
programs, which often lead to full-time
jobs at the railroad after graduation.
Some short lines have adopted mentoring programs in which a senior manager
is teamed with an entry-level employee
to teach the ropes in an expedited and
hands-on way. Other railroads have
initiated executive shadowing programs.
In these, a middle manager spends days or

weeks at a time witnessing firsthand how
a top executive deals with large volumes
of emails, phone calls, customer meetings
and personnel matters and handles other
executive-level responsibilities.
Judy Petry, president and general
manager of Farmrail System, Inc., shared
her company's approach. "At Farmrail, we
look inside the ranks for rising stars. For
the most part, railroaders are self-taught
self-starters. Our job is to hire brainpower
with the right attitude, invest time and
effort via mentoring and provide challenges
across departments to foster growth."
Exposure to the industry via networking
with Class I employees, attending industry
and regulatory meetings and participating
in ASLRRA committees are also opportunities Farmrail seeks out for its employees.

Educational Opportunities
The increasing proliferation of transportation and rail-specific educational offerings
has helped create a new generation of
young students interested in working in
the transportation supply chain. Penn State
Altoona offers the nation's first and only
bachelor of science degree in rail transpor-

FALL 2016 // SHORT LINE CONNECTOR

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Short Line Connector - Fall 2016 - Cover1
Short Line Connector - Fall 2016 - Cover2
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Short Line Connector - Fall 2016 - Cover3
Short Line Connector - Fall 2016 - Cover4
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/summer19
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/spring19
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/winter19
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/fall18
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/summer18
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/spring18
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/winter18
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/fall17
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/summer17
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/FactsAndFigures
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/spring17
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/winter17
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/fall16
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/summer16
http://www.nxtbook.com/ygsreprints/ASLRRA/spring2016
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