On this episode of The Construction Record Podcast, digital media editor Warren Frey speaks with LiUNA Local 1611 training plan administrator Tom Miller and B&B Contracting Group operations manager Peter Mihalech about an initiative to train Surrey School District students as construction craft workers right out of high school.
Miller explained the origins of the program and gave an overview of what students experience as they move from high school to training to the work site, and Mihalech relayed his experiences teaching and managing the program as B&B Contracting introduced students to everything the construction industry has to offer along with what they need to be aware of while entering the industry.
Mihalech said young people recognize the value of trades as a career path and added the program is more general and diverse in terms of the number of topics it covers, and Miller said while there are differences the Gen Z workers in the program have a positive attitude but due to their age simply don’t know the ins and outs of the industry, though they’re quick learners.
News editor Lindsey Cole also joins the pod to discuss the ongoing Greenbelt scandal unfolding in Ontario, including the resignation of provincial housing minister Steve Clark and a subsequent cabinet shuffle by Ontario premier Doug Ford. She also highlighted a story from Daily Commercial News staff writer Don Wall about the recent Building Transformations conference where Ontario construction stakeholders including representatives from the Ontario General Contractors Association, Concrete Ontario, Skilled Trades Ontario and the Residential Construction Council of Ontario, who all spoke to the vital importance of tackling change. Finally, Lindsey also pointed to a compilation of articles we’ve prepared for Suicide Prevention Month, given the alarming statistics concerning suicide and skilled trades.
You can listen to The Construction Record on the Daily Commercial News and Journal of Commerce websites as well as on Apple Podcasts, Spotify and Amazon Music’s podcast section. Our previous celebration of our landmark 300th podcast is here. Thanks for listening.