Construction Career Day Shows Teens the Possibilities

More than 900 students from 31 high schools throughout the region got a close-up look at rewarding and interesting construction careers during King County Construction Career Days held at Magnuson Park in Seattle Oct. 3 and 4.

The event is aimed at reaching future workers long before theyre seriously thinking width=300about career choices and is sponsored by AGC of Washington AGC Education Foundation Washington Laborers-Employers Cooperation & Education Team Washington State Department of Transportation King County Building Trades Council and several other government industry and education groups.

Students spent a half day exploring different aspects of construction: They operated a wide variety of heavy equipment; had hands-on experiences such as constructing and deconstructing a coffee house; learned about apprenticeship and other educational programs; and explored the University of Washingtons virtual construction lab.

Construction Career Day brings awareness to young people of a career option that is a very viable one to college said Fred Berg Instructor with the Puget Sound Electrical Apprenticeship and Training Trust. Plus even as the economy is down we still face a shortage of skilled workers. We have to actively recruit for the kids sake and ours as an industry.

Debbie Washington Career and College Specialist with Truman High School said the width=300event made a positive impression on students. After returning to school all the students had to write a reflection Washington said. One student wrote that the field trip was a successful learning adventure because it seemed like a whole bunch of people -- including me -- were into everything and they were eager to learn. It was cool to see all of the possibilities that were showcased.

The hands-on aspect of the event is especially noteworthy notes Bob Austin Career and Technical Education Specialist with Seattle Public Schools. Seeing kids working with big equipment is neat he said. It just might spark their interest in a construction career.