With the looming workforce shortage, Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) believes the future of the industry relies on the ability to attract and retain top talent with skills to fill the needs of the companies who are building America. Through the annual National Craft Championships (NCC), ABC hopes to promote life-long learning and to recognize the top-notch craft trainees on a national level.
ABC currently is looking for craft trainees and apprentices from across the country to compete among the best of the best in their field at the 2014 NCC, held in Birmingham, Ala., April 29-May 2. Competitors will get a chance to show off their superior skills and be named the “champion” in their craft.
The trainees’ on-the-job skills are put to the test during a six-hour project where their hands-on work is displayed to the public. Spectators can walk around the open area and see welders fusing metal together, carpenters building a structure from scratch and electricians carefully pulling their wire.
Craft trainees compete in one of 13 competitions, including:
- Carpentry: Residential/Commercial
- Electrical: Commercial-Industrial
- Electrical: Residential-Commercial
- Fire Sprinkler
- Instrumentation Fitting
- Millwright/Industrial Maintenance Mechanic
- Sheet Metal
Planned and conducted by ABC’s National Craft Championships Committee made up of contractor representatives and ABC chapter and national staff, the competition has seen nearly 1,500 competitors to date.
To be a part of this nationally esteemed event, ABC chapters and member companies can submit an Intent to Compete form until Dec. 6. Eligibility requirements are available on the NCC website. Companies, chapters and craft trainees interested in participating can watch the highlights from last year’s competition, see pictures of the 2013 competition and its winners, or read more information on how to get involved.