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Industry Targets Underrepresented Groups in New Worker Recruitment

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Labor + Trade Relations

Industry Targets Underrepresented Groups in New Worker Recruitment


October 16, 2020
Vocational high school class
Photo: auremar

Although the pandemic is well underway, it’s not stopping the industry from recruiting more much needed workers. The Home Builders Institute has partnered with more than 100 schools around the country to show students the value of working in the construction trades, according to Marketplace. There is a focus on recruiting underrepresented groups as well, such as women, veterans, and those involved in the justice system. By working in summer training programs, high school students can end their summer with an industry-recognized certificate that can lead to an entry-level job, providing them with higher paying jobs straight out of high school.

In a workshop at Carver Vocational-Technical High School in Baltimore, Maryland, a small group of teenage boys huddled around a newly framed wall. Wearing hardhats, safety glasses and, of course, masks, they took turns measuring and cutting drywall to attach to the frame.

The class is part of a summer training program. Students learn basic carpentry skills like safety, construction math and how to use tools. It’s a partnership between the Home Builders Institute, Baltimore City Public Schools and the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services.

Jaheem Lewis, 18, said he’d always liked to build.

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