The construction industry is a major barometer of economic growth and prosperity. Its importance in Ontario touches on the residential, commercial, industrial and institutional sectors. Yet the coming shortage of highly skilled employees is becoming a serious concern for local industry. The Ontario Construction Secretariat points out that in 2001, 60 per cent of construction workers in the province were age 35 or older, demographic information that indicates an aging workforce. Great opportunities exist for young people willing to take the time to gain and perfect the increasingly sophisticated technical skills industry needs. What is an effective way to call attention to this combination of need and opportunity?
Its a trade show, information exchange, recruitment fair and technical project display all rolled up into one. Its Network 2002, an initiative of Conestogas Architecture - Construction Engineering Technology program and the affiliated Program Advisory Committee, which is composed of industry representatives.
Network 2002 is set for the Doon campus in Kitchener on Tuesday, January 22, from 2 - 9 p.m., and its open to the public, free of charge. The location is the Blue Room cafeteria. The first two hours of the event are structured so that industry representatives have the opportunity to view and inquire about student projects in the first hour, then students have the chance to visit industry information booths and question industry representatives in the second hour.
Participating will be Program Advisory Committee members, local construction industry employers and representatives, program faculty and students, and College officials. Invitedare secondary school teachers associated with technical courses and secondary school students interested in pursuing construction-related careers and education in this rapidly changing field. In all, an attendance of approximately 300 is expected.
Graduates of the program go on to successful careers in all aspects of architectural technology: design, research and planning, self-employment, manufacturing industries and government service. The program is recognized and endorsed by a number of professional organizations, such as the Ontario Building Officials Association and the Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians and Technologists.
Final-year students will display their third-year projects (in progress), which are the culmination of their technical studies at Conestoga. Conestoga students in this field have earned many Skills Canada medals at the provincial and national levels. Among the industrial displays will be firms engaged in engineering consulting, general contracting, architecture, landscape architecture, building inspection, residential design, subtrades, environmental services, and construction materials manufacturing and supply.
The Architecture - Construction Engineering Technology Program Advisory Committee aims to make Network 2002 a means to promote the construction industry as a source of considerable career opportunity, while at the same time encouraging networking among industry representatives, Conestoga students and faculty, secondary school students and faculty, and interested members of the public.
CONTACT: Gordon Lipke, 519-748-5220, ext. 3276 (Voice mail 8150)