Project Build Minnesota Launches Construction Workforce Initiative

The residential construction workforce shortage has reached critical levels throughout Minnesota. In response, Housing First Minnesota has taken a leadership role in the development of Project Build Minnesota, a newly formed nonprofit dedicated to broadly sharing career opportunities in the construction field and creating a movement to return Minnesota’s culture to one that appreciates craftsmanship and labor.

Project Build Minnesota is centered around a growing website at
www.projectbuildmn.org. The site describes a wide array of careers in construction, highlights expected compensation, and covers the necessary expertise and training for the positions. The site launched last year, and Project Build Minnesota continues to enhance it.

“Our goal is to make it perfectly clear to youth ages 16-22, their parents, school administrators and faculty, counselors and policy makers that construction offers a great career path,” said David Siegel, executive director of Housing First Minnesota and chair of the Project Build Minnesota marketing committee.

“Once you come to our site, you know exactly what steps to take next to get where you want to go.” Now that phase one of the site is developed, the marketing committee is focused on implementing a detailed plan to drive traffic and spread the word.

In addition to the website, Project Build Minnesota has been conducting outreach through conferences and meetings. Project Build Minnesota exhibited at the Minnesota School Boards Association conference, the Minnesota Association of Secondary School Administrators, the Northwest Lumber Association show, and it will have a booth at the Housing First Minnesota Builders and Remodelers Show and the Minnesota School Counselors Association conference.

Housing First Minnesota has two seats on the Project Build Minnesota board of directors, as do the two other founding organizations, The Minnesota Builders Exchange and Associated Builders and Contractors. The Builders Group (TBG), Northwest Lumber Association and Builders Association Minnesota each have one seat. Project Build Minnesota held its first-ever board of directors meeting earlier this year and the level of energy and excitement is high.

A wide array of construction-related associations came together under the guidance of The Builders Group Education Foundation; those discussions lead to the development Project Build Minnesota.

“Now, for this movement to succeed, we need the entire industry to step forward and carry the message,” explained Siegel.

For questions about Project Build Minnesota, contact executive director Dennis Medo, at 612-221-9849 or dennis@projectbuildmn.org.

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