MDE partners with construction industry on skills competition

MDE partners with construction industry on skills competition
Mississippi Department of Education logo. Photo source MDE

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - This is a news release from The Mississippi Department Of Education 

The future construction workers for the Mississippi construction industry will take center stage March 3-4 at the Mississippi Trade Mart as the Mississippi Construction Education Foundation (MCEF) and the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) and other construction industry partners host the MCEF/Skills USA State Championship Construction Competition. The competition will be held in conjunction with the "Passport 2 Careers Expo" (P2C) and counselors, directors and superintendent's workshop.

The state championship will consist of three levels of competition: high school, community college and working apprentices. The areas of competition include carpentry, cabinet making, electrical-residential, electrical-commercial, HVAC, masonry, plumbing, sheet metal, welding fabrication, welding-structural and team build. More than 300 finalists will compete in 11 craft areas, all at the same time, for prizes and a trip to the USA Skills National Competition.

This event is in keeping with MCEF's goals and objectives to recruit and train quality construction workers for the state's construction industry and provide leadership in training in the field of construction, industrial maintenance, energy and manufacturing. MCEF provides National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) accreditation to some 5,000 high school students annually and administers a Department of Labor non-union registered apprenticeship program for workers already employed in the field of construction.

In addition, a workshop for statewide counselors, career and technical education directors, and superintendent will be held concurrently to assist and counsel administrators on industry careers. Last year, over 125 counselors and CTE directors attended and that number is expected to exceed 150 this year.

In addition to the Skills USA Competition, there will be a P2C Expo for over 900 statewide 8th grade students at the Fordice Equine Center. These students will tour through the center and be able to participate in hands-on skills as well as experience the latest in tools, equipment and technology. They will participate in over 30 hands-on skills and activities while visiting this Expo.

MCEF is a construction foundation that is composed of nine construction trade associations which includes Associated General Contractors (AGC), Mississippi Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), American Subcontractors Association, National Association of Women in Construction, Mississippi Asphalt Association, Mississippi Roadbuilders Association, Mississippi Concrete Association, Mississippi Manufacturers Association, and Brick Industry Association.

For additional information, call Mike Barkett or Dianna Eaton at 601-605-2989.