The North State Building Industry Foundation began its thirteenth year of operation on July 1st. Since its inception, the Foundation has been hard at work dedicating time to developing skilled workers and building programs that engage the North State BIA members and strengthen our industry for the future.
There has long been a discussion about the need for more labor in order to build the needed homes in our area. However, in addition to this issue, we have an aging workforce and as more workers move towards retirement, we are further widening the gap if we do not engage younger workers. The Foundation has programs that are designed to show young adults how valuable and rewarding a skilled trade job can be.
The Summer Internship Program has just wrapped up the fifth year and has seen a total of 283 interns complete the program. High school students receive basic knowledge and hands-on experience in afterschool programs and then take that knowledge with them to the job site over the summer where they work with experienced trades building houses. These interns are later able to apply for jobs directly with the trades, at the Senior Hiring Fair, which has a 90% hiring rate.
Another program that the Foundation is excited about is the Construction Fundamentals Program at Sierra College. This program is a crash course in working in the building industry to give individuals the experience needed to be hired after the twelve-week course. This fall will be the pilot class for this program and both Sierra College and the Foundation are encouraged by early interest in the program.
Lastly, the Out of School Youth program is currently recruiting for their next cycle of youths in need of help overcoming severe barriers to employment and success. This program gives participants, aged 16 - 24, an opportunity to gain work experience, obtain a GED, help find full-time employment and gain valuable interview experience. This program has been a staple with the Foundation for many years and is an important part of this program.
Still in the first month of their year, the Foundation has hit the ground running and accomplished a lot. In addition to working with interns, recruiting for the Out of School Youth Program, and developing a brand-new college level program, the Foundation hosted a fundraiser Friday night. This premier event was well received by both industry members and members of the community. Learn more about the Foundation by visiting biaworkforce.com and if you are interested in getting involved email Amanda.