The current generation of high school students has been raised with a phone or tablet in their hands from a young age. Making them highly comfortable and competent with using technology.
With tech so heavily intertwined into their daily lives, it should be no surprise that jobs that utilize these new-age technologies appeal to young people.
While many people would associate using advanced technology in fields like computer science or engineering, the construction industry has its fair share of exciting devices and gadgets.
If you are an educator with a population of students who aren’t going to college but have a vested interest in technology, a career in road construction might be perfect.
Construction is Cooler than You Think
You would be wrong if you are among the population that believes working in construction is nothing more than dirt and shovels. Civil construction has exploded in the last few years. Leading to advancements in the industry and a culture shift.
A recent IBM study found that, following the pandemic, 62% of executives have given “high or very high priority” to digital transformation – compared to 17% who said the same back in 2018.
The industry has gone through a significant face-lift, from piloting drones to using augmented reality to help operators run excavators.
New tech like drones, robots, artificial intelligence, augmented reality/virtual reality, smartphone apps, tablets, and wearables are becoming increasingly popular among job seekers in this generation.
These technologies are not only impressive and fun to work with, but they also have the potential to revolutionize industries and the way we live and work. If you’re looking to attract top talent, then investing in these cutting-edge technologies is a great way to do it.
With high starting wages, benefits, and the ability of a young person to help work on a project that will withstand the test of time, you have a pretty exciting and rewarding career option for your students.
Construction provides many building blocks of a fantastic career for young people; they might not know it yet.
Preparing the Future Generations for a Progressive Career
Did you know that in 2020, nearly 11 million people were employed in the construction industry in the U.S.? The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that less than 1 million of those workers are younger than age 24. The average age of a worker in the construction industry today is 42.
Simply put, the civil construction industry needs new workers, and Gen-Z has the population to do it. But changing the perception of a lifelong career in construction is the first step.
As long as the idea of construction being a backup option for students who can’t go to college is prevalent, the industry will struggle with workforce issues.
Road building and civil construction are necessary for our country to progress. Our country cannot operate efficiently or continue to advance without a qualified workforce to build, maintain, and fix infrastructure.
That’s where schools and teachers come in.
How Can Teachers Help Address the Construction Workforce Issues?
As teachers, giving your students the tools to lead a happy and successful life past high school is part of the job. Providing them with options that don’t involve college is crucial for helping as many students as possible.
With shifting attitudes toward trade school and thousands of apprenticeship programs available, the availability of these life-changing careers is high.
Moving dirt may not sound overly appealing to some students, but highlighting the positives in the industry does. Things like a high starting salary and career advancement opportunities can make it very attractive to the new generation.
Exposing children to these benefits through programs like the ones Work IN Roads offers with its Civil Construction Pathway is a great way to help your students and state at the same time.
Types of Students Who May be Interested in a Career in Road Construction
The type of student who may be interested in a career in construction does not fit one specific mold. As the demand for workers rises and the industry evolves, there is a place in construction for students from all walks of life.
If you have students interested in any of the following areas, exposing them to the commonly unknown positives of working in construction would be beneficial.
Encourage Construction Careers
As a teacher or educator, it is part of your job to help ensure students succeed following high school, regardless of whether they attend college.
Not all students are created equal, and there is no “one size fits all” approach to setting up kids for success.
If you have students that are not sure what they will do post high school, but are interested in things like technology, help guide them down this path and encourage schools to better push and prepare careers in construction.