The Build Your Career (BYC) “Contractors in the Classroom” program is designed to place CAGC’s BYC Ambassadors directly in schools throughout the Carolinas region. The goal of this program is to educate students, their parents and teachers on the many amazing benefits of pursuing a career in the construction and craft trade industry. Through ongoing outreach programs developed for our North and South Carolina schools, our Ambassadors are able to promote construction careers to future generations of workers and educate them on why it is such a rewarding and viable career choice.
Since launching the BYC “Contractors in the Classroom” program in partnership with CAGC member, Trident Construction, at a high school in Charleston, SC earlier this year, this construction education outreach program has really gained major traction with K-12 schools throughout the entire Carolinas region. Dozens of our BYC Ambassadors have successfully led numerous classroom presentations in an effort to promote construction career awareness to local students in their respective areas. Build Your Career has also increased our number of volunteer Ambassadors from 74 to 172 while expanding our school coverage area by almost tripling the number of K-12 schools actively registered to participate in our programs from 160 to 392 over the past year.
Also over the past year, the fully loaded Ambassador toolkits were designed and distributed to our Ambassadors to better equip our volunteers with the resources and materials they needed to more effectively promote construction careers to North and South Carolina students. These customized toolkits included various forms, PowerPoint presentations, school visit and career fair checklists, project-based learning activities and so much more.
Recently we began offering customized, onsite Ambassador orientation sessions for our CAGC member firms. Long-time Carolinas AGC members like Barnhill Contracting Company, Hall Contracting Corporation and Trident Construction, just to name a select few, have all participated in these personalized “Ambassador 101” boot camps. Each company received a toolkit full of customized resources including: PowerPoints incorporating their logo, project site pics and career pathway info specific to their company; ideas for unique project-based learning activities that showcase their field of expertise; plus each company had the chance to participate in a preparatory Contractors in the Classroom practice presentation.
Over the past year, our Build Your Career volunteer Ambassadors and your BYC Director have visited dozens of K-12 schools throughout the Carolinas and have had the opportunity to partner with numerous workforce development constituents in the industry all in an effort to attract your next generation of workers and put an end to the skilled labor shortage. BYC has been fortunate enough to work with Lowe’s on their “We Are Generation T” project, NC and SC Works offices across both states, the NC Community and SC Technical College Systems, the NC and U.S. Chambers of Commerce and too many more to mention. We’ve even had several videos on YouTube that have been watched by people all over the country over the last year–proof that the excitement about our workforce development initiative is spreading like wildfire! (Make sure you also check out this fun video of Johnakin Middle School students enjoying a fun building project during a Contractors in the Classroom presentation).
Now that the CAGC Build Your Career Contractors in the Classroom program, led by our diverse group of BYC Ambassadors, has seen such success and exponential growth over this last year, we will continue to diligently replicate this worthwhile and impactful program in even more schools throughout the Carolinas in 2020. We will continue expanding our group of volunteer Ambassadors and we will also begin offering new, employer-driven programs in 2020 that will yield even higher levels of measurable ROI to our participating member firms. These new programs will be instrumental in creating more direct talent pipelines back to our members as we continue promoting construction career awareness to the next generation of construction and trade industry craft workers. We will be revealing several of these new and exciting programs at our 2020 Convention in Aruba so stay tuned for more news.
In closing, on behalf of the entire Carolinas AGC Staff and Build Your Career, we would like to extend a very special and deeply heartfelt “thank you” to each and every one of our BYC Ambassadors and CAGC member firms who have shown such unwavering dedication, commitment and support to Build Your Career over this last year. Everything we do is for all of you, but we also realize that we could not do the things we do WITHOUT all of you, so for that… we sincerely thank you ALL!
For more information on the CAGC Foundation’s Build Your Career workforce development initiative, our Contractors in the Classroom program, to volunteer to become a BYC Ambassador, or to request your own onsite customized Ambassador training session, please visit our website or contact me, Program Director, Tammy Ford, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (704) 995-3901.To make a charitable contribution to BYC, please visit our secure online donation portal.