Southwire Team Members Discuss 12 for Life® Case Study at Harvard

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Apr 19, 2023

Last month, Southwire team members traveled to Harvard Business School to interact with MBA candidates and discuss a case study that began more than a decade ago – centered around Southwire’s 12 for Life® program.

The 12 for Life case study focuses on Southwire’s partnership with public school systems and how it has transformed not only the students’ lives but also the communities in which the program operates. 

“It is always exciting to go back to Harvard to share the success of the 12 For Life program with the students from Harvard Business School,” said Burt Fealing, executive vice president and general counsel. “What makes this such an incredible event is that the students – who are future leaders of organizations – get to see that a company can be passionate about doing good for the communities around us while making sound business investments.”  

12 for Life is a collaborative partnership that began between Southwire and Carroll County Schools in 2007. The program provides classroom instruction, on-the-job training, key work and life skills, mentoring and employment opportunities to high school students. In 2010, a second site for 12 for Life was added at Southwire’s Florence campus in Alabama.

Through 12 for Life, students are motivated to stay in school, graduate and move ahead to become successful, productive members of the communities in which they live.

“It was such an honor for me to represent 12 for Life and to be a part of this case study in such a prestigious location,” said Derrick Autrey, Carrollton 12 for Life manager. “It was so inspiring to hear the perspective of college students and others from outside of our communities who are studying the case talk about the partnership and equity that the program builds. I can’t help but be overwhelmed with pride to know that I am part of the 12 for Life family.”

To date, this case study is the oldest of its kind that is still being reviewed at Harvard, due in part to how the partnership continues to grow and implement working solutions that benefit the program.

“My biggest takeaway from the case study was getting to see all of the future business leaders in the class discussing how the 12 for Life program can have a positive impact on so many communities,” said Marcus Johnson, Florence 12 for Life manager. “As future leaders, my hope is that they will replicate the 12 for Life model to impact communities not only locally but nationally.”

For additional information and insight into the Harvard case study and 12 for Life program, click  here. For more Southwire news, visit