Trade Unions Teach Middle School Students About Hands-On Careers
The Minnesota Concrete and Masonry Contractors Association (MCMCA) hosted Maple Grove Middle School students in a hands-on teaching event in New Hope on Wednesday.
“A career in the trades, after three or four years, can go in a lot of directions,” explained John Slama with MCMCA. “We have suppliers, designers, engineers, and architects. They are all part of what it takes to put a building up.”
The idea behind the event is to reach students in seventh or eighth grade before they go to high school to let them know there are career alternatives to make a livable wage.
Slama says there’s opportunity for these students, who will be ready for the workforce in less than 10 years.
“Our average age of a member for our locals is around 50 years old. So the next 10 years we are retiring, year after year,” explains Slama. “We don’t have a lot of kids who know about trades, so we are trying to embrace that. There’s a lot of opportunity out there.”
Companies making up MCMCA are the Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers MN/ND/SD Local 1, the Cement Finishers and Plasters Local 633, the Laborers Local 563 and the Operating Engineer Union Local 49.
MCMCA hopes to offer this opportunity to all local middle schools in the future. They also hosted this event last year.