The Wilmington-Cape Fear Home Builders Association (WCFHBA) partnered up with UNCW’s Cameron School of Business Youth Entrepreneurship Program (YEP) this summer to go beyond the brick and mortar of the construction industry. The week-long program, which began July 8 and ends July 13, nurtures the interests of local students who have the potential to be leaders both within business and within the community.
“We have formed a fabulous partnership with Wilmington-Cape Fear Home Builders Association,” said Program Director Cheryl Sutton. “They are very eager to have a youth component and are working very closely with us to introduce youth into their industry.”
This year’s theme, “Construction: Beyond Brick and Mortar,” is designed to show participants the physical and technological aspects of the construction industry and its importance to the community. Projects, field trips, and guest speakers all center on this year’s theme, so students are shown what it means to be an entrepreneur in a particular field. YEP is a partnership with UNCW’s Cameron School of Business and the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
Participants visited Kids Making It, a nonprofit organization focused on woodworking mentoring programs, and also the CFCC North Campus Vocational Center, where they will see the high-tech side of construction. Students will be given the chance to work with a 3D rendering of a building under construction and have creative learning and building challenges throughout the week. During the program, students will come up with their own innovative idea and create a project based on the program’s construction theme and present their projects to a panel of judges at the end of the week.
“This year’s Program fits right into the Association’s workforce development initiatives as it engages the minds of young entrepreneurs to see all facets of the construction industry,” said David Spetrino, WCFHBA President. “National statistics show that by 2020, much of the construction workforce in America will be replaced, engaging our youth early and introducing them to the many facets of construction is paramount as they are the future of our industry.”
“The program introduces students to fields and trades that are important to the local community and its growth. Community engagement and building partnerships to increase community and regional impact are key components of UNCW’s Strategic Plan.” said Sutton.