Last year we published a blog post about a jobsite tour we held at the Larimer County Administration Building for students from Thompson Valley High School in Loveland as part of AGC Colorado’s Construction Connection program. Since this time last year, the program has doubled in size and now includes 22 schools! In addition to site visits, another component of Construction Connection is roundtable events held at local schools.
Making these roundtables meaningful for the students requires insight from more than one trade and, therefore, more than one company. As with the tour of the Larimer County Administration Building, several businesses came together to ensure the students learned about multiple career paths available to them in the construction industry. At this roundtable event, Haselden joined forces with Encore Electric, Gallegos, and Lind’s Plumbing & Heating to show the kids the possibilities open to them not only in general contracting, but also in electrical, masonry, and plumbing.
The roundtable at Thompson Valley High School this month brought over 20 young men and women together for an hour and half to talk with multiple construction
to all the industry members involved in this program that are helping introduce high school students to construction careers!
professionals and come away with an honest perception of what working in our industry looks like. Mostly sophomores and juniors, the students were broken into groups of five to six and each group spoke with two to three industry professionals for about 10 minutes before moving on to the next station. Students learned about various possible paths to enter the construction industry, along with what a typical day might look like. The specific positions focused on were construction estimator, commercial construction superintendent, mason, electrician, and plumber/pipe fitter.
The students asked a wealth of great questions that let you know these kids are thinking ahead! They asked about topics like salary expectations and benefits, as well as what types of apprenticeship programs and trade schools are out there. Many were pleasantly surprised to learn about programs like Construction Careers Now that offer free training in the trades, not to mention that some companies will pay for their employees’ training courses. Case in point, Haselden has a program in place that puts qualified team members through a four-year carpentry program at no cost to the employee.
The Future of Construction
The interest in the Construction Connection program has grown exponentially in the last year, and more kids than ever are realizing the appeal of building a career in construction. Michael Miller, Industrial Technology Education Teacher at Thompson Valley High School, stated, “I was very glad to see all students engaged and genuinely interested in what you are so passionate about. We are aware of the desire of the industry to generate interest in young people to help guide them into these rewarding careers and are doing our best to steer them in your direction.” The engagement and enthusiasm shown by these students bodes well for our industry.