New website introduces Minnesota high school students to 30 different construction careers
MINNEAPOLIS/SAINT PAUL – The Construction Careers Foundation has launched a new website — ConstructionCareers.org — for young adults to learn about potential careers in Minnesota’s construction industry. The website offers descriptions of 30 different construction careers with pathways on how young adults may enter the construction industry – through events, internships and trade union apprenticeship programs.
The website is just one piece of a broader initiative called Construction Careers Pathways, a united effort between trade unions, construction companies, high schools, non-profits, the State of Minnesota, and other strategic partners to attract more young people into construction careers – professions such as: electricians, plumbers, welders, sheet metal workers, carpenters, ironworkers, pipefitters.
“Between an aging workforce and a new generation of young people who are simply unaware of careers in construction, we are attempting to address a huge need in the marketplace,” says Pat Wagner, director of the Construction Careers Foundation. “By bringing together a broad coalition, we intend to educate the next generation and their influencers (parents, guidance counselors, teachers) about the viability of construction careers.”
“Construction careers offer good wages with good benefits and career advancement opportunities,” Wagner added. “By providing hands-on experiences for youth to learn more about these careers, both during the school year and over the summer, we’re showing students and their parents that if they’re looking for an alternative to college, a career in construction allows you to learn on the job while avoiding college debt. These are viable careers with which a person can support a family, and these are positions that are needed by our communities statewide.”
According to Wagner, this means that trade unions and construction companies are going to need to invest in attracting more people of color, more women, and more veterans to meet the need for skilled labor now and in the years to come.
“With our website, we want to share the stories of real people – especially people of color, women and veterans – who are establishing careers in Minnesota’s construction industry,” says Wagner. “When young adults see photos and videos of real people like them establishing careers in construction, they’re more apt to start asking questions about construction careers.”
Because there is such an emphasis on four-year college in our society, many young adults are not aware of construction career opportunities. The intent of Construction Careers Pathways effort is to increase awareness among high school and middle school students about great-paying careers in construction in Minnesota, and to facilitate connections that allow more young adults to enter into trade apprenticeship programs immediately following high school graduation.
ConstructionCareers.org offers a way for young people to engage with programs, information, and members of the construction industry. Visitors are encouraged to explore the different career pages, learn about apprenticeship, and engage with the programs and events designed to facilitate successful construction careers.
About the Construction Careers Foundation
The Construction Careers Foundation is a Twin Cities-based nonprofit dedicated to fostering and developing construction career pathways for Minnesotans, especially young adults. With funding from the Minnesota State Legislature and oversight from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), the Construction Careers Foundation conducts a statewide effort to attract more people, in particular, young people, women and people of color, into the construction trades to support Minnesota construction industry. To learn more about the Construction Careers Foundation, visit ConstructionCareers.org. The new website and public information awareness campaign is introduced through a collaborative effort between the Minneapolis and Saint Paul Building and Construction Trades Councils, Contractor Associations, the Apprenticeship Coordinators Association of Minnesota, Construct Tomorrow, seven Twin Cities-area public school districts and the Construction Careers Foundation (CCF).