The field of electrification continues to grow, and so does the need to equip the workforce with the necessary skills to support the expanding infrastructure.

The University of Minnesota’s Technological Leadership Institute (TLI) launched the Center for Electrification Opportunity (MNCEO) to bring together leaders in higher education, industry, government and technology to lead workforce development training and industrial upskilling.

As a partner, Toro is working with MNCEO to help shape the future of electrification, create job opportunities for a growing workforce and put the state of Minnesota at the forefront of the industry.

“We’re thrilled to be working in this space with our partners in business and academia,” said John Hurst, senior director for the Center of Technology, Research and Innovation at The Toro Company. “This is a great opportunity to expand the state’s capabilities in electrification, and The Toro Company is proud to be a part of it.”

A first step toward the future

On Oct. 9, MNCEO held its debut initiative event, Electroposium, at the University of Minnesota’s Twin Cities campus. The goal of the event was to inspire and empower the next generation of leaders by showcasing the latest technological advancements, offering hands-on training and informational sessions and fostering discussions about the future of electrification.

The free event drew nearly 500 attendees and offered networking opportunities for students, industry professionals and academic experts. Throughout the afternoon, attendees had the opportunity to view exhibits, see emerging technologies and take part in dynamic breakout sessions.

Travis Thul, senior fellow and director of operations at TLI, was highly impressed and encouraged by the crowd and the number of speakers from across multiple disciplines who came together for a common goal.

“In one breakout room, we had the commissioner of the Department of Corrections talking about how to reskill individuals who have finished serving time and are looking to restart life. In the next room we had a conversation on electromagnetic compliance for electrified systems,” Thul said. “In both of those rooms, they were standing-room only conversations. It was pretty remarkable, and we couldn’t have done it without Toro’s leadership.” 

With an eye to the future, Toro is constantly developing new electrified and autonomous solutions for our customers. To see the full line of electric products or to learn more about Toro’s efforts in the space, go to