The annual RhodeWorks Construction Career Days event, conducted by the URI Transportation Center, has become a valuable workforce development tool for the state’s transportation construction industry. The goal is to introduce high school students to careers in the industry to support the pipeline that will provide the construction professionals of tomorrow.
Joining forces with RIDOT, the URI Transportation Center, trade unions and participating CIRI member companies, CIRI helps to make this two-day event an educational success. For this year’s event, held on April 26 & 27 at the RIDOT Midstate Maintenance Facility in East Greenwich, we again provided hard hats for the high school students who attended. Participants included 1206 students and 34 exhibitors from the industry.
“This is a valuable program for both CIRI and the industry at large,” said Mike D’Ambra, president of CIRI. “The average age of a worker in the skilled trades is about 48 years old. We need to have ways to show young people this is a field to consider. One that really has tremendous opportunities.”
The activities at RhodeWorks Construction Career Days show the students what the industry is about firsthand. Through hands-on experience with construction equipment, and interaction with professionals from the transportation and construction industries, students learn about the skills and education needed for various career paths.