As a response to Harvard’s 2011 Pathways to Prosperity report, national leaders from the construction industry joined forces with educators this week during the Construction Career Pathways Conference. Hosted by NCCER in conjunction with the Association for Career and Technical Education VISION2014 conference, the program highlighted examples of some of the highest performing career pathways in the country for students interested in a career in construction.
The conference kicked off with a panel from Louisiana that embodied the type of collaboration and synergy that drives results and changes lives. If necessity is the mother of all invention, it was especially true in the case of Louisiana’s craft shortage where there is more than $50 Billion in new petrochemical construction planned demanding 86,000 more craft workers by 2016. Eddie Rispone, the chairman and founder of ISC Constructors, an ABC member company in Baton Rouge,La., in addition to representatives from the Louisiana Workforce Commission, Louisiana Community and Technical College System and office of Career and Technical Education, shared with the audience their story of addressing this issue by forming a Craft Training Task Force under the Louisiana Workforce Investment Council to standardize curriculum and collaborate on an education delivery system available to all students with multiple entry and exit points. Read more about the collaboration here.
A second panel showcased other successful collaborations between the construction industry and education professionals. These include:
- SkillsUSA’s partnership with local industry to train future leaders at the high school level through CTE competitions
- The Mississippi Construction Education Foundation’s innovative state-wide funding model
- Gaylor Electric’s partnership with the Noblesville School District to deliver work-based learning through internships for CTE students
- Robins & Morton’s K-12 outreach at their project site in Millen, Georgia
In addition to the panelists, conference attendees included Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) CEO Mike Bellaman, as well as representatives from ABC contractor members such as Bechtel, KBR, Jacobs & TIC.
The conference also provided a platform for NCCER to launch new Construction Career Pathway resources that can assist both industry and educators in creating high performing partnerships that link industry-driven craft training with in-demand, high wage careers.
“It is our belief that the implementation of a career pathways plan created and endorsed by both industry and education will help students acquire the skills they need to succeed in today’s workforce,” said Don Whyte, president of NCCER.
Plans are already underway for the 2015 Construction Career Pathways Conference. For more information on conference resources, speaker information, or to join the conversation, click here.