First-of-its-Kind Construction Degree Program Receives Approval  

After a rigorous application process, the Western States College of Construction (WSCC) has received approval to be an independent degree-granting institution under the Colorado Department of Private Occupational Schools – the first of its kind in the country.

WSCC was officially launched in 2020 and accredited as the first professional institution of its kind in the nation by the American Council for Construction Education (ACCE) in late 2021. With eight campuses across Colorado and Wyoming, WSCC currently provides students with an opportunity to find a life-long career in the skilled trades.

WSCC offers training programs in HVAC-R, pipefitting, plumbing and sheet metal, providing students with the skills, licenses and certifications to work in the skilled trades. They graduate debt-free while learning on the job and earning a salary.

Upon hearing the decision, WSCC President Dr. Mostafa Khattab said, “As a first-of-its-kind institution, we are thrilled to be one step closer to our goal of providing degrees in occupational studies and construction education. WSCC looks forward to the ways this will impact the future of Colorado’s skilled trades workforce.

WSCC was formed through the collaboration between labor and management partners, including the Rocky Mountain Mechanical Contractors Association, the United Association of Plumbers, Pipefitters, Welders, and Service Technicians, the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association – Colorado Chapter, and the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail & Transportation Workers and their construction and service contracting companies.

“This approval couldn’t have come at a better time. Workforce challenges are at an all-time high, but because of the tenacity of members in our industry, labor partners, and partnerships across the state at every level, WSCC has come to fruition. We look forward to seeing the impact this institution will have on our current and future generations of workforce,” Todd Von Lintel, WSCC board member and vice president of operations for U.S. Engineering Rocky Mountain Region weighed in.

Today’s approval is a significant milestone for the future of construction education – the approval gives WSCC the authorization to confirm associate degrees in occupational studies. “The impact this decision will make on the next generation of our labor force will be huge. We’re thrilled to see another investment in skilled trades education, and we’re excited to promote the incredible industry that will help build Colorado’s future,” said Gary Arnold WSCC board chair and business manager of Pipefitters Local 208.

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