For Immediate Release
ComEd Media Relations
ComEd and partners graduate largest training class; expanding job opportunities in construction, engineering, solar power, and energy fields
CHICAGO (April 16, 2018) – On Friday, ComEd hosted a graduation ceremony for the largest graduating class of CONSTRUCT, a nine-week job training program aimed at getting more diverse candidates into local construction and energy jobs.
CONSTRUCT, organized by ComEd in conjunction with 38 construction industry companies, two local utilities, and eight social service agencies, offers participants the information and guidance needed to compete for entry-level construction and project management jobs in construction and energy-related fields
"Jobs are the lifeblood of our communities, providing them with economic strength and vitality. We understand the importance of being a local employer and we are proud to offer a pathway to our industry for people of our communities," said Anne Pramaggiore, president and CEO of ComEd. "We applaud the 2018 graduates and look forward to their participation in the construction workforce of the future."
The 2018 CONSTRUCT class is the sixth group to go through the program since its inception in 2013. Career guidance, life skills training, and practical education about the construction industry are part of the program, as well as increased knowledge of requirements for entering construction-related fields successfully. The 2018 curriculum was updated with courses focused on the growing need for project management skills in the Construction industry, along with additional courses in high-rise construction. Additional coursework related to renewable energy, including solar, was added in 2017.
CONSTRUCT offers instruction and access to special sessions where students can hear from and meet company representatives. There is the opportunity to job shadow, and to attend a career fair to learn about a range of potential job opportunities in the industry. To date, more than 400 students have participated in the program, including the 109 new participants this year. The success and continued growth of this program is due in great measure to the construction industry companies that are looking to hire local, diverse candidates to join their workforce.
Participating companies include: Intren, Labor organizations - IBEW Locals 9, 15, 134, 196 and Chicago Area Laborers, Nicor Gas, Peoples Gas, ABB, Inc., Aldridge, Ardmore Roderick, Builders Association, Burling Builders, "D" Construction, Inc., David Mason + Associates, d'Escoto, Inc., Electric Conduit Construction, Environmental Design, Inc., F.H Paschen, Groundhog Utility Construction, HBK Engineering, Henkels & McCoy, John Burns Construction Co., KDM Engineering, Lindblad Construction, LiveWire, Magellan Development Group, James McHugh Construction, Meade, Midwest Access Solutions, MJ Electric, MZI Group, Inc., Nash Brothers Construction Company, Inc., NPL Construction, Olenick & Associates, Osmose Utilities Services, Inc., PMI Energy Solutions, Primera Engineers, Rabine Group, The BarTech Group, Trice Construction Company, United Scrap Metal, V3 Companies and Trinidad Construction.
"All the contractors, the companies involved, you just don't meet these people every day; it's priceless," said Dexter Allison, a 2014 graduate of the program, whose sons Damier and Dexter, Jr., are part of the 2018 program. "For our family, it's been the opportunity of a lifetime."
"I learned a lot throughout the program, but I gained the most confidence from my job shadowing experience," said Gregory Rounds. "I'm really excited to go out there and find a job that I really love, that I can make a career out of."
Understanding the need to help knock down barriers to entry for construction-related fields, CONSTRUCT launched in May 2013 out of a partnership between ComEd, Intren and the labor unions. What began with ComEd, 10 companies and three social service agencies has grown to include Illinois' other major utilities - Nicor Gas, Peoples' Gas, 38 companies and eight social service agencies.
To complete the program, participants must attend at least 95 percent of the full-day classes and take the select, required tests. Upon completion of the program, participants can choose any number of career paths, from applying to work with the participating companies and satisfying any applicable union requirements, to applying to work with ComEd or employers in other sectors.
While completion of the program does not guarantee a job, individuals who complete the program successfully are trained to be qualified, knowledgeable, and ready to compete for construction jobs in Illinois.
Anyone interested in applying should contact the agencies directly. The agency contact numbers are:
ASPIRA of Illinois
Austin Peoples Action Center
Chicago Urban League
National Latino Education Institute
773-247-0707, ext. 223
Quad County Urban League
630-851-2203, ext. 222
St. Sabina's Employment Resource Center
SER Jobs for Progress
YWCA of Metropolitan Chicago
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