The Associated General Contractors of America and Procore Technologies Inc., a global provider of construction management software, announced they have met their initial fundraising goal of $500,000 for a new scholarship to support minority students studying construction at the nation's Historically Black Colleges & Universities, or HBCUs for short. Students will begin receiving the scholarship starting in the 2022-23 school year.
"Our members understand and appreciate the wisdom of investing in a more diverse and inclusive future," said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association's chief executive officer. "By meeting the initial fundraising challenge for this new scholarship, they are supporting construction students at some of the nation's oldest and most prestigious construction programs."
Sandherr noted that the new scholarship is part of the association's broader efforts to diversify the construction industry and help it become even more inclusive. The association's workforce recruiting campaign, "Construction is Essential" is designed to help recruit more diverse workers into the industry. Meanwhile its "Culture of Care" program is designed to help firms create more inclusive workplaces, so they better retain newly hired workers.
Among key supporters of the new scholarship are the Beavers Charitable Trust, Bowen Engineering, Bulley & Andrews, Caddell Construction Company, Josam Co., Stanley Construction and Williams Brothers Construction. Association officials added that they plan to continue fundraising for the new HBCU scholarship to be able to support even more students.
"In order to create opportunities for everyone to thrive and succeed, and to open more doors for the next generation of construction professionals, we must work together," said Sasha Reed, director of industry advancement at Procore. "These scholarships will increase the likelihood that more Black students will choose construction and graduate prepared to become the leaders in the industry."
Procore helped launch the new scholarship last fall with an initial $250,000 gift. In addition to supporting the new scholarship, Procore.org, its social impact arm, provides educational support to HBCUs through free access to Procore's platform and training resources to equip instructors with the tools needed to educate the future construction workforce.
"This new scholarship allows us to invest in future industry leaders coming out of the nation's HBCUs," said Darrel Gibson, the executive director of the AGC Education & Research Foundation. "These scholarships make it easier for emerging leaders to focus on their future, instead of their finances."
The HBCU scholarship program will be administered by the AGC Education and Research Foundation, which awards a host of construction scholarships, funds research into key construction topics and supports faculty externships at commercial construction firms. Gibson said the first round of scholarships will be awarded in the early fall to support students in the school year 2022-2023. Additional scholarships will be awarded annually in the fall.
Click here to learn more about the new scholarship and find out how individuals can contribute to it.
For more information, visit agc.org and Procore.com.
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