Denver, CO — The Associated General Contractors of Colorado (AGC), in association with the Colorado Contractors Association (CCA) and the Hispanic Contractors of Colorado (HCC), was recently awarded a $1 million grant under the WORK Act Grant program. The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment issued a formal Request for Proposal back in February of 2016 with the scope focusing on skilled worker outreach, recruitment and training programs. Of the six recipients, the AGC team was awarded the largest portion of the grant. This initiative originated from House Bill 15-1276, with the goal to close the information gap from the lack of public awareness of skilled trades and programs available to train workers in skilled trades.
During the first cycle of the grant, from April 1, 2016 to June 30, 2017, AGC, CCA and HCC will partner with the Emily Griffith Technology College to offer a 30-day pre-apprenticeship program. A minimum of 15 individuals will enroll with no tuition required in the first pre-apprenticeship class, which begins the second week of September 2016.
Each training program will run for four weeks and hold classes four days per week. In addition, on every third Thursday of the training program, a job fair will take place, matching local contractors with potential skilled workers to ensure the opportunity for job placement for graduates of the program.
The pre-apprenticeship training program targets 18 – 34 year-old males and females who are under-employed or unemployed. The teaching modules will provide a gateway into the construction industry with introductions to the various trades from plumbing to masonry to carpentry and other skilled trades. Bryan Cook, Chapter Operations Director at AGC, noted, “The program will provide a career pathway to the construction industry complete with training on the communication, technical and safety skills required to work on a job-site. With a solid foundation in construction, our goal is to allow people to find jobs immediately upon graduation.”
Graduates of the pre-apprenticeship training program will have completed a 10-Hour OSHA training, received exposure to BIM (Building Information Modeling), the ability to read basic construction drawings, an understanding of the various building techniques, as well as time management, work ethics and other communication/management skills in order to work successfully in the construction industry.
An array of marketing tactics is planned to inform the greater public of this skilled worker training opportunity. These include, but are not limited to, announcements on BuildColorado.com, social media campaigns, radio station promotions, highway billboards, bus tails, ads in local trade magazines and advertising at sporting events in the Denver Metro area.
Michael Gifford, President and CEO of AGC, comments, “This million-dollar grant program allows the AGC, CCA and HCC to take a more active role in addressing the skilled worker gap and labor shortages currently present in the construction industry.” Through hands-on training, this program can connect working-age adults with local contractors who are in need of and ready to hire skilled workers to support the construction growth in Colorado.
Logo courtesy of AGC of Colorado