In the past five years, the Minnesota Trades Academy (MTA) has graduated more than 150 young people from its paid summer construction internship program. This summer, from June 20 until mid-August, 50 interns will experience the program and receive personal tours of at least five construction programs and union apprenticeship training centers in the Twin Cities. Interns also will learn how to read blueprints, use tools and practice construction safety on their summer project worksites.
The Construction Careers Foundation developed The Minnesota Trades program for students who are interested in exploring careers in Minnesota’s building trades and construction industry.
“The Minnesota Trades Academy is a paid internship program for young people who do real work and practice valuable real-world skills applicable to any construction site,” said Construction Careers Foundation Program Director Lindsay Tallman. “Interns will use this summer to strengthen their skills and explore career pathways that they can apply to when they turn 18 and are eligible to join a construction trades union.”
The Minnesota Trades Academy interns are 16 to 22 years old. They register and interview for the apprenticeship through one of four local cohorts – Minneapolis Step Up, St. Paul Right Track, Ramsey County’s Hired and Brooklyn Centers’ BrookLynk.
The internship includes two consecutive tracks of focused study.
Track I is an eight-week introduction into construction career opportunities in the building trades industry. Interns work in hands-on workshops led by MTA leaders on how to use tools, practice measuring, and get the chance to build take home projects. Interns also practice specific trades experiences such as carpentry, pipefitting, and demo with the electrical trades. They are also exposed to industry-related careers such as architecture, surveying, estimating, project management, and design build.
Track II directs interns toward an advanced route of applied learning. Interns are prepared to select a construction career path to further explore – union apprenticeship training; construction-related post-secondary tracts; or direct entry into the construction workplace. From there, interns enter different apprenticeship training centers where they receive tours, training and supervision from industry experts while completing projects using both hand and power tools.
“We look forward to another successful year of trades exploration and we want to thank our community partners, trade unions and amazing mentors for providing our interns with a comprehensive view of all that Minnesota’s construction industry has to offer,” Tallman said.
To learn more about the Minnesota Trades Academy and the Construction Careers Foundation, visit ConstructionCareers.org.