Yamaha will be at several college career fairs over the next few months. College students in engineering, business or technical disciplines who are looking for career opportunities on Atlanta’s south side should take a good look at what is happening at the Yamaha campus in Newnan.
Joe Fruscione, now an IT project analyst with Yamaha, started as an intern in the IT department during his senior year in college. Among other things during his internship, he had a hand in updating the company’s public website, something that had not been done in quite some time. “I didn’t know really anything about web development at the time and just got tossed into it,” he said. “I learned a lot and they were happy with my work at the end of it. So it worked out pretty well.”
One thing that stood out to Fruscione about that time was the friendliness and encouragement of his coworkers and supervisors, for whom “there was no such thing as a stupid question,” as he put it. He had the chance to lend a hand in a number of different projects and take lead on a few of them on his own.
A year after Joe’s graduation, Joe’s manager during his Yamaha internship called him and said he needed him to fill a job. Fruscione said he had no experience at that position, but the person who hired him knew he would do a good job and would be teaching him everything he needed to know anyway. He was back at Yamaha at the start of 2022.
One of Joe’s current projects is establishing the portal through which Yamaha employees will be able to reserve WaveRunners to play on for a day at the lake, a new benefit of employment.
“It’s interesting,” he said of his current role. “I get to have my hand in a lot of cookie jars at once, which is cool. No two days are the exact same.” Fruscione has been exposed to plenty of different technologies and work with different people, both of which he loves. “There is a lot of upward mobility, a lot of room for growth,” he said of Yamaha. They do a very good job. In my experience, the mentorship from the senior employees has been awesome. They’ve taken me under their wing and taught me the things I needed to know.”
Drew Hood is now a manufacturing engineer for ROV assembly. He started in Yamaha’s co-op program during his sophomore year at Auburn, working three semesters at the plant leading up to his senior year, while also filling in part-time between co-op stints.
Upon graduation in the summer of 2021 with a mechanical engineering degree, Hood already had a connection with the company and was able to start right away as a safety engineer, where he worked for a year before transferring to engineering on the ROV assembly line.
“There have been some absolutely terrific people I’ve been able to meet and work with here,” he said. “Several of them have taught me more than my degree ever did.”
Hood has worked in two different departments for Yamaha, but that is just a fraction of what is available on the job front, citing the company’s fabrication of raw materials as just one example.
“Making a pipe into a frame – you get to see that all the way up to a finished product shipping out the door. You have a huge opportunity to see something from the absolute bare minimum start to finished product.”
He recommends the co-op program as a stepping stone into a permanent role with Yamaha. “I personally work with an engineer here who has been here for 35 years, so since the doors have opened,” he said. “I think it’s a fantastic place to get your feet wet, get your feet on the ground. You get to see everything.”
Yamaha is constantly on the lookout for new, talented people like Fruscione and Hood. To that end, company representatives will be in attendance at several upcoming career fairs on various college campuses in the Southeast, beginning Aug. 30 at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro. Sites and dates in September include Sept. 8 at Georgia State University in Atlanta, Sept. 12 at Auburn University in Alabama, Sept. 26 at Kennesaw State University in Kennesaw, Sept. 26 at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, and Oct. 24 at University of West Georgia in Carrolton.
Yamaha Motor Manufacturing Corporation of America designs and assembles WaveRunners, ATVs, Side by Sides, and Golf Cars at the Newnan plant. One of Coweta County’s largest private employers, Yamaha is currently expanding the team, hiring for both contract and professional team members. Full-time hires, such as engineers, buyers, and technical professionals enjoy a comprehensive benefits package, including insurance, 401k, profit sharing, and more. Details are at yamahajobs.com.