ConstructReach, a construction industry workforce development initiative and consultancy, will host a three-day event, titled “Show Me Progress,” September 25-27 in St. Louis, Missouri. Hosted in ConstructReach’s headquarters city, the event will be two-fold, beginning with an industry roundtable discussion on salient issues surrounding diversity, equity, and the trajectory of the industry. The latter portion, featuring ConstructReach’s signature “I built this!” (IBT) initiative, will introduce local youth to sustainable career opportunities within construction and manufacturing. Through this innovative event, ConstructReach seeks to promote collaboration between sectors to diversify the construction and manufacturing pipeline, ensuring a brighter future for the industry and the city of St. Louis.
From 1-4 p.m. on September 25, roundtable attendees will discuss educating, exposing, and repositioning construction and manufacturing as a viable career choice and creating formalized pathways for the next generation to enter the industry. During this private event, stakeholders from throughout St. Louis will be able to hear directly from business leaders and community members about social responsibility models, the importance of DEI, and effective ways of engaging local youth for a promising future. Attendees will leave with actionable solutions they can use to advance their companies forward and better connect with their community.
The following two days will be devoted to “I built this!,” to be held at the Marie Curie parking lot, located on Saint Louis University’s South Campus. The event invites hundreds of high school students aged 16-18 years from neighboring school districts to learn more about the construction and manufacturing industry and participate in hands-on activities related to carpentry, fixturing, design and technology, mechanical, and plumbing. Students will also be able to connect with general contractors and other industry professionals to discuss internships, career opportunities, and scholarships. Now in its fifth year, ConstructReach’s IBT initiative has been hosted in cities across the country, including Miami, Los Angeles, Chicago, Minneapolis, Atlanta, Kansas City, and Detroit. This will be the second consecutive year “I built this!” has come home to St. Louis.
Industry partners confirmed for the event include KAI Enterprises, International Code Council, Reinhold Electric, Murphy Company, Taylor Bros Construction, Wies Drywall and Construction Corp., and Target Corporation. School district partners include Saint Louis Public Schools, Rockwood School District, Normandy School District, and public charter school, Kairos Academies. ConstructReach has partnered with SLU’s Career Services to host the event on their campus.
“Our mission at ConstructReach is to increase the visibility of the construction industry by educating students about career opportunities, connecting general contractors to interns and innovative internship curriculum, and creating content, experiences, and a ConstructReach Community to expose diverse populations to construction careers,” said Paul Robinson, CEO and Founder of ConstructReach. “Over half of the construction workforce is over the age of 46 and will be retiring. ‘I built this!’ introduces diverse students to construction opportunities to work toward changing those statistics.”
Founded in May 2018, ConstructReach is a construction industry workforce development initiative and consultancy that seeks to increase the visibility of the construction industry by educating students about career opportunities within construction, connecting general contractors to interns, employees, and internship curriculum, and creating content, experiences, and a ConstructReach Community to expose a diverse population to sustainable construction careers. Over half of the skilled construction labor force is nearing retirement age and fewer students, especially from diverse backgrounds, are pursuing a construction career. Now in its fifth year, ConstructReach works with students, educators, high school counselors, large brands, and general contractors throughout the country to ensure they have the information and connections they need to facilitate the long-term longevity of a new, more diverse construction industry. ConstructReach started efforts with more than 100 general contractors throughout the United States but is currently adding additional general contractors, and expanding brands to its network. For more, please visit constructreach.com.