ODOT Bridges Gap Between Students, Construction Industry

Students at the Construction Career Day were able to operate machinery; climb electrical poles and try their hand at virtual welding.

📅   Mon October 03, 2016 - West Edition #20


High School students enjoy an interactive experience at the 15th Annual Construction Career Day, called “Tools to Build Your Future” hosted by Oklahoma Department of Transportation and multiple industry leaders. The event offered hands-on activities with equipment and opportunities for students to talk about jobs in construction-related fields.
High School students enjoy an interactive experience at the 15th Annual Construction Career Day, called “Tools to Build Your Future” hosted by Oklahoma Department of Transportation and multiple industry leaders. The event offered hands-on activities with equipment and opportunities for students to talk about jobs in construction-related fields.

High school students recently learned more about future career opportunities in the construction industry by getting hands-on experience with industry experts.

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation Civil Rights Division, in partnership with several industry leaders, hosted a Construction Career Day for students in the Oklahoma City metro area in an effort to bridge the gap between students and the construction industry.

This year's 15th annual Construction Career Day, called “Tools to Build Your Future” offered hands-on activities with construction equipment and opportunities for more than 260 high school students to talk with industry leaders about jobs in construction-related fields.

This year's event included more than 35 construction companies, materials suppliers and industry partners. Students from Oklahoma City Public Schools and a local technology center attended the event held at the Oklahoma State University – OKC campus.

Students were able to operate machinery; climb electrical poles; try their hand at virtual welding; and visit with industry leaders in construction and engineering.

The construction industry is facing a severe shortage of skilled workers. If not addressed, the shortage will impact the industry's quality, safety and ability to build the infrastructure needed to meet the demands of a growing population. While many students may not have ever considered a career in construction, the industry offers competitive wages and a variety of employment opportunities for high school graduates.

“This event has been a huge success due to all our industry partners, the Oklahoma City public school system and all the volunteers,” Jenny Allen, ODOT Civil Rights Division Manager, said. “The event offers the chance to educate students about opportunities in the transportation and construction industry and helps with employment skills while underscoring the importance of furthering their education.”

The students are specifically selected by their instructors because of their interest in construction. Students wishing to attend the event next year should talk with their teachers and reach out to the ODOT Civil Rights Division 405-521-3186.

This event was sponsored by ODOT, OSU – OKC, OKC Public Schools, Association of Oklahoma General Contractors – Heavy Highway, AGC – Building Chapter, Oklahoma Asphalt Pavement Association and the Oklahoma Concrete Pavement Association.