Power saws, paint, cement and wood — these are the required classroom materials for students in the Twin Falls School District’s Construction Program. The trade course offerings are a game changer for both students and the Twin Falls community.
The program comes after the school district took steps to expand its career technical education offerings. This is the program's third year and was created after evaluating both labor market demands, and determining where the opportunities are to earn a living wage. The courses offer hands on learning for students interested in going into careers involving carpentry, building and construction.
Preparing students for careers in trade will be essential given the growth of Twin Falls, and the need for skilled workers in building, carpentry and construction.
“We have older generations retiring and so getting these students while they’re in high school and they are thinking about careers. We want them to know that construction is a valuable option for them,” said Cameron Hoge, instructor for Building Construction Program.
The program is offered to students at Twin Falls High School, Canyon Ridge High School and Magic Valley High School.
Students are taught all components of the trades in a classroom and hands on setting.
“We learn a lot about general construction we’ve done anything from the shed back here to drywall to tiling and that sort of a thing… it leads into future potential jobs,” said Landon Willes, 12th grader at Twin Falls High School.
The Magic Valley Builders Association presented two checks to the program Monday, and helped it reach its $20,000 fund goal.
“I built my first home when I was 18 years old and just fell in love with the industry. For young adults that are coming up, this is an opportunity that I think is not given to a lot of people and it’s pretty amazing what they do here,“ said Jon Zernickow, president of ZFI Construction and program donor.
The money will go towards taking students to job sites touring companies, and funding necessary building materials.