BC&E Foundation awards $14,000 to support construction education
The BC&E Foundation has awarded $14,000 in grants to six recipients to help provide construction-industry education to students around Central Maryland.
“This is a great group of recipients and they really do work that matches the Foundation’s mission,” said Doug McGinnis, a 2021 member of the BC&E Foundation Board. “The variety of programs supported with these grants is impressive. It covers the engineering and architectural side as well as the trades and ranges from very targeted activities with recipients like the Carroll County Career and Technology Center to larger, broad-brush efforts like the work of MCCEI.”
The Foundation awarded $5,000 to the Maryland Center for Construction Education and Innovation (MCCEI) to support the next phase of development of Build Your Path – an educational resource that provides guidance counselors and students with extensive information about career opportunities in the construction industry. MCCEI is preparing to produce a series of videos entitled “Making a Difference.” The videos will highlight the positive impact that individuals working in architecture, engineering and construction have on the world around them, including beneficial impacts on environmental issues, social justice issues and the work of nonprofit organizations.
MCCEI is also working towards increasing the number of students enrolled in AEC Career and Technology Education (CTE) programs in Maryland. Currently, AEC students account for 5.12 percent of all CTE students. MCCEI is aiming to grow that number to 10 percent in the next five years.
The ACE Mentor Program of Baltimore received a $5,000 grant from the Foundation. The ACE program, which has historically served more than 100 high school students in Baltimore City and Baltimore County, plans to use the funds to reestablish in-person programming with COVID-19 safeguards. The funds, according to ACE, will make the program more accessible to all students and support engaging experiences, such as field trips to Rash Field park and other construction projects.
The BC&E Foundation awarded Carroll County Career and Technology Center (CCCTC) two grants.
A $2,100 grant will enable welding students to take the AWS Welding Test for free. Students with certifications can go straight into the workforce after graduating from high school. “Having at least one AWS certification will give them more job opportunities and put them in a higher pay bracket,” according to CCCTC’s application.
A $900 grant will assist students in CCCTC’s masonry program by providing each of them with an essential tool. In the grant application, teacher Mike Campanile wrote, “As a masonry instructor, I have come to realize that a personal masonry trowel for every student is a must. Students should start the program with their own, brand new trowel/masonry hammer in order for the trowel to wear to their style of work. Injecting passion into new students is key to hooking young men and women into staying in masonry.”
At Eastern Technical High School, the $2,000 Foundation grant will help students in the Building and Construction Technology program complete their tiny house project. The house was designed by students who participated in the 2021 ACE Mentor program, and is intended to serve as an onsite dwelling for a construction superintendent. This year’s work on the project will help students learn “all facets of project completion,” including selection and installation of mechanical, electrical and structural systems.
A $1,500 grant will help the Safe Alternative Foundation for Education in Baltimore conduct the SAFE CTE Camp. The three-week, all-day camp will provide students with knowledge of various construction-industry career paths and requirements, information about resources available through the Baltimore City Public Schools CTE program and a curated career path for each child. “The goals of CTE Camp are to help students understand the importance of an education and its connection to the real world and potential career paths,” the SAFE application states.
“The importance of the BC&E Foundation grant program is absolutely huge,” McGinnis said. “I hope this effort brings a lot of pride to our membership. We are helping people get into the construction industry and, a lot of times, helping disadvantaged young people get access to programs and training.”
BC&E members can support the ongoing grant program, he said, by attending the annual Hard Hat Gala and supporting the Foundation’s fundraising efforts.