Nearly 3,000 Central Florida junior and senior high school students are building their careers at the 17thannual Central Florida Construction Career Days. The event, hosted by the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and its industry partners, helps teenagers explore and build a strong foundation for a successful future in transportation construction.
“Construction Career Days is a wonderful way to introduce the builders of tomorrow to our industry today,” said Dee Zinck, FDOT’s District Construction Administrative Manager and co-chair of the event.
Junior and senior high school students from more than 50 Central Florida high schools are attending Construction Career Days to learn about many opportunities available and experience some skilled trades firsthand. Engineers and skilled trade workers from local firms, technical schools and FDOT will hold 38 interactive learning labs. Students will even get a chance to try their hand at operating heavy equipment and simulators.
Construction opportunities represented through the program are not minimum wage jobs. “Those in the field earn an average of $18 an hour,” said Geoff Scales, Senior Project Manager with Cardno, an environmental engineering firm, and co-chair of the event. “These are careers that you can grow with. If you have the drive and the ambition, a career in construction can take you far.”
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics project the number of jobs in the construction field will grow by nearly 21 percent over the next few years, but the current labor pool is shrinking with the average skilled worker retiring at close to 50 years old. That’s why Construction Career Days encourages Central Florida teens to explore the transportation construction industries.
Construction Career Days takes place at the Central Florida Fairgrounds Jan. 26-27 from 7:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. each day. Students from nine Central Florida counties will attend. For more information, visit www.ccdfl.com.