Construction group set to supercharge worker skills as labor shortage threatens recovery

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Building
Skills New York (BSNY) is partnering with Bronx Community College to help
construction workers dial up their skills and help stave off a labor shortage
caused in part by a lack of skill workers.

The new Construction
Career Accelerator (CCA) Program will enable workers already registered with BSNY
to pursue advanced electrical, plumbing and carpentry training.

The program
comes as the construction industry enjoys a rapid recovery after being hit hard
in the pandemic-induced economic downturn.

A labor shortage that existed prior to the COVID crisis has been exacerbated over the past year, with construction industry experts predicting that companies will need to hire 430,000 more workers than they employed in 2020.

DAVID MEADE

“We know
that New York is going to have to build its way out of the economic downturn
caused by the pandemic, and also that the construction industry has many
opportunities to offer the thousands of individuals who remain unemployed as
result of that crisis,” said BSNY Executive Director David Meade.

“Together,
BSNY and its partners like BCC are working to assure individuals in some of
most vulnerable communities are able to benefit from all the construction
industry has to offer by learning critical skills that will help propel them
along the path to success.” 

Founded in
2012 by leaders in the affordable housing industry, BSNY is a not-for-profit
organization that helps provide New York residents with jobs at local
construction sites in underserved communities.

The organization works with developers including Arker Companies, BFC Partners, L+ M Development and Related Companies and has placed underemployed local residents in hundreds of jobs on their sites and others.

The
Construction Career Accelerator (CCA) Program, made possible by a grant from
the New York State Department of Labor, will help BSNY participants already
placed on construction jobsites across the five boroughs to gain the necessary
skills to advance their careers.

Scholarships
have already been awarded to BSNY workers who have proven themselves in the
field and expressed an interest in pursuing advanced electrical, plumbing and
carpentry training.

Each class
will participate in up to 200 hours of technical skills training provided by
BCC, which offers the National Center for Construction Education and Research
(NCCER) curriculum, a nationally recognized certification system for skilled
construction trades. The credentialing process follows a series of stackable
training courses that facilitate a progression of skill acquisition. This
summer’s classes will include a NCCER core, NCCER electrical, NCCER carpentry
and NCCER plumbing.

“We are
excited to launch this unique skills training program with Bronx Community
College, which will provide best-in-class instruction to help take BSNY
participants to the next level in their respective careers,” said Meade.

“The CCA
advances our mission to help traditionally underserved New Yorkers gain access
to economic mobility and professional development while also contributing to
the revitalization of their own neighborhoods.

“We look
forward to replicating this program to elevate workers and bolster the
construction industry at a critical time in the city’s history.”

“Bronx
Community College has a long history of providing skills training to the New
York City workforce, which benefits both the workers and the industries in
which they work,” added BCC President Thomas A. Isekenegbe. “We are greatly
pleased with this opportunity to collaborate with Building Skills New York and
bring fresh talent to the construction companies that help develop our
city.”

“Building Skills is helping individuals in all five
boroughs establish successful, good-paying careers in New York’s growing
construction industry. I’m thrilled this program is providing my constituents
with access to high-quality education courses that will allow them to build
their resumes and increase their opportunities to enter – and grow in – this
sector, while contributing to the growth of their own neighborhoods,” said Council
Member Oswald Feliz.

“As our
post-pandemic economic recovery continues, it’s critical that we provide
individuals with the skills they need to succeed in the long term and that they
can carry with them from one jobsite to the next.”

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