Build California celebrates first anniversary

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Build California website
The Build California website

The Associated General Contractors of California (AGC) and the AGC Construction Education Foundation say they are proud to announce the one-year anniversary of the Build California Initiative.

Build California was launched in response to industry concerns around a sustained pipeline of qualified craft workers in future generations, the organizations said in a statement on Sept. 18.

“It is a comprehensive workforce development initiative created to inspire, engage, and activate the next generation of California’s construction workforce. Since its launch, Build California has been successful in informing and inspiring a new generation of construction professionals using a robust mix of outreach and programmatic efforts to engage and activate California’s 12 to 24-year old’s in ways the industry has never seen. To date, Build California has reached more than 4.4 million people with the rallying call — you, too, can Build A Legacy™ in today’s construction industry.”

During the last 12 months, these efforts have made strides in preparing future construction professionals for their careers and, ultimately, transforming perceptions about the industry as a whole.

Here are a few of the biggest wins in the past year, the associations say.

  • Coalition Building: With a diverse network of organizations — from AGC members, public agencies, private owners, associations, unions, apprenticeship programs, non-profits, and more — the coalition provides the voice to support our industry. All of the organizations in the coalition are united by the need for this initiative and are working together to get it done. With a vast network of more than 30 organizations, Build California is able to amplify and build influence within all corners of the industry. The initiative has introduced coalition members to eager, young audiences with more than 50 social media features, garnering thousands of impressions through livestream social media events.
  • School Partnerships: Through this partnership with school districts across the state, Build California is connecting directly with eager students that can be apprenticeship ready as soon as they are able to enter the workforce. This brings awareness to action by providing resources at school activation events that include live demos, virtual competitions, and more, and 24 events have been hosted so far. The initiative is a resource for educators and parents alike as they navigate distanced learning. Build California will continue to build relationships with schools across California and has already reached more than 3,700 students to date.
  • Ambassador Program: Build California recently launched its ambassador program. To date, the initiative has trained more than 45 construction professionals in virtual presentation techniques and the Build California brand. This diverse volunteer team of ambassadors will work in tandem with the AGC outreach staff to spread the word about the benefits and opportunities available in the industry. They will serve as the face of the industry by providing mentorship and lived experience to tell the story of construction. This type of endeavor is only as powerful as the industry partners that participate, and Build California is empowering industry professionals to share their passion with new audiences for years to come.
  • #IYouWe Series: The #IYouWe Instagram Live series is revolutionizing the industry to champion diversity, inclusion, and equity like never before. It’s reaching people where they are, using digital platforms to meaningfully engage them about topics that have been pushed aside for too long. Using the momentum of online conversations surrounding topics like “Allyship in Construction” and providing a platform for Black leaders in the industry to speak, #IYouWe opens the dialogue on issues that will shape the industry for California’s next generation. To date, the #IYouWe series has garnered more than 14.5 thousand impressions and continues to be a major driver of engagement among Build California audiences.

“The only missing piece to a successful career in the trades was exposure, but the construction industry has found a champion in Build California,” said Josh Raper, regional manager, Southwest Regional Council of Carpenters. “Their team has created an information pipeline to a much-needed future workforce through tech and outreach. This group has improved the industry and changed people’s lives through good paying jobs and for that we thank you.”

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