CAGC starts Build Your Career to tackle skilled workforce shortage

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byc website cagc
The CAGC Foundation Build Your Career website

The CAGC (Carolinas Associated General Contractors) Foundation has announced the launch of a construction industry-wide program, Build Your Career (BYC), to help tackle the biggest challenge in North Carolina and South Carolina—the shortage of a skilled workforce at a time when there are thousands of well-paying, career opportunities available in the construction industry in both states.

The goal of Build Your Career (BYC) is to get more people aware of construction career opportunities by launching education efforts on the middle school and high school levels, as well as in community colleges, and with individuals wanting to change careers. To do this, BYC will send construction industry leaders out into the school system to educate students, educators and parents about what a terrific career the construction industry offers. BYC emphasizes that the construction industry offers well-paying and rewarding jobs that need to be filled now.

CAGC Foundation chair Claudia Dodgen of Crowder Constructors Inc., sees BYC as a construction ambassador program and financial vehicle that can turn things around by putting enthusiastic young men and women in promising careers. Careers, for example, where it’s not unusual for a welder to make $90,000 a year; or a crane operator to make $60,000 a year; or a carpenter to make $50,000 a year—all with the potential to move into incredible lifelong careers.

However, according to Dodgen, “the CAGC Foundation can’t do it alone. Please be our partner in helping solve this challenge by donating to BYC today.” (To donate, visit www.buildyourcareer.us.)

CAGC has been meeting with other industry stakeholders to provide a home-grown program that will enhance the entire construction industry, and has sponsored career day events in both North Carolina and South Carolina. Thousands of high school students were exposed to a variety of construction craft professions, given an opportunity to experience hands on activities, and were provided information about the training needed to become a skilled craftsperson. With support, this effort can be amplified in 2017 and beyond.

BYC’s goals for 2017 include recruiting 42 volunteer ambassadors from within the construction industry to meet with students in their area to promote construction as a career, as well as host booths at 14 career fairs throughout the Carolinas.

BYC will also promote construction firms who already have similar programs, such as Contract Construction and LCI-Lineberger in South Carolina, and Pinnix, Inc. and State Utility Contractors in North Carolina. Greg Hughes of Contract Construction and past CAGC Foundation chair said it best: “I have built lots of schools and now it’s time for me to give back to the students in those schools.”

For more information, visit www.buildyourcareer.us, call Roddy Craft at CAGC, phone (704) 995-3901 or email him at rcraft@carolinasagc.org.