Advancing Our Culture: Diversity Front and Center During ‘LyondellBasell Signing Day’

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Many high-performing student athletes from across the U.S. will experience the culmination of their college recruitment journey on “National Signing Day.” This is when they append their signature to a letter of intent committing to attend a certain college or university to compete in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). On “National Signing Day,” some of the athletes even take part in news conferences for local - and national - media outlets to capture their signifying moment. For 10 recent graduates of the LyondellBasell Center For Petrochemical, Energy, & Technology (CPET) at San Jacinto College (SJC) – all from different walks of life – the pinnacle of their hard work and dedication was recognized on “LyondellBasell Signing Day” when they accepted and signed job offers with the company.

“Receiving a job offer from LyondellBasell shows me that hard work, dedication and confidence pays off,” said Summer Barnhill, recent SJC graduate and newly hired operations technician trainee at LyondellBasell’s Channelview Complex. “Every time I came in contact with a LyondellBasell employee at SJC while training at CPET, I introduced myself as Summer, their future colleague.”

LyondellBasell Signing Day marked the beginning of a much-anticipated journey into the petrochemicals industry for the graduates, who were selected through a collaborative hiring process between San Jacinto College and LyondellBasell’s Houston Operator Hiring (HOH) committee. The HOH committee included six LyondellBasell managers from different departments, such as manufacturing and human resources. The managers all recognize the value of a diverse and inclusive workforce, and hired graduates who range in gender, race, national origin and age, in addition to other background traits. For one of the more experienced graduates hired, the new position at LyondellBasell is the start of a second career.

“Hiring diverse candidates is important for the performance of the company,” said Chris Cain, LyondellBasell Channelview Complex site manager. “We want individuals to bring their whole selves to work and feel comfortable sharing their ideas and opinions. When you create a work environment that includes employees from different backgrounds and with varying levels of experience, there is greater potential for igniting creativity and driving innovation. The key to unlocking the strength of diversity’s direct contribution to successful business outcomes is knowing and emphasizing that we are all working toward the same objectives.”

The 10 graduates had one common goal while attending SJC – to find and pursue a better career opportunity. Barnhill said while she witnessed the construction of CPET from the ground up, she realized a career in petrochemicals was the right move for her.

“I chose to attend SJC because I watched as CPET was being built,” said Barnhill. “Every time I drove by the center, I told myself that it was where I needed to be. I am excited to say that I have upward movement and will be working for a company that cares about their employees.”

On LyondellBasell Signing Day, many of the graduates’ friends and families attended to cheer them on, some teary-eyed as their loved ones signed what for some was a life-changing job offer. Graduates also celebrated signing day with SJC leadership, a few of their new LYB colleagues and 20 SJC classmates who received a LyondellBasell scholarship and are completing their education and training at CPET as well.

LyondellBasell is committed to advancing tomorrow’s workforce through supporting a number of programs and initiatives across the globe, including internships and co-ops. For more information, click here. Details around LyondellBasell’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion program, can be found here.