The Grand Rapids Public Schools in Grand Rapids, MI, is partnering with several contractors for a construction and design-themed program that will prepare high school students for careers in construction.
The Union Academy for Design and Construction will weave trade skills into lessons, provide hands-on experience and match students with industry mentors.
Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Michigan members The Christman Company and Rockford Construction, along with Progressive AE, provided industry leadership by helping the Grand Rapids Schools establish the core curriculum and will provide ongoing technical assistance and mentors.
Students will have internships at construction sites in addition to class field trips and visits from management and jobsite personnel. The program is expected to begin this fall.
With an aging work force and the perceived attractiveness of other careers, the U.S. Department of Labor projects a critical shortage of skilled workers in the construction industry in the coming years.