New blood needed as trade industries expand

A press conference at the Fort Wayne Urban League announced a new program to highlight trade jobs in Northeast Indiana.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) A need for more apprentices and diversity within skilled trades has brought about a new program in Fort Wayne. The Northeast Indiana Building Trades, the Fort Wayne Urban League and the Indiana Plan have created a program to help people get pre-apprenticeships in various trades. On Monday, the Urban League hosted a press conference to talk about the program.

BUILD, named from the initials of the companies, will provide three weeks of pre-apprentice training in 17 skilled trade organizations in Northeast Indiana. Various trades include bricklayer, carpenter, electrician, iron worker, painter, plumber, roofer and more. People can sign up for the BUILD program at the Fort Wayne Urban League.

According to the Northeast Building Trades, the average tradesperson in Indiana is more than 50-years-old. This pre-apprenticeship program comes at the forefront of several construction projects that are predicted over the next five years. The press release outlined a “definite need” for more skilled labor workers as more trades people approach retirement.

BUILD training starts April 20. It will go from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The program will help people focus on a particular trade that fits their professional skill set. Those who successfully graduate from the program will earn an industry recognized certification and the opportunity to become an apprentice in their chosen field.

While programs such as BUILD in the past have failed, Present of Northeast Indiana Building Trades Darryl Esterline said the organizations are committed to making it work.

For more information on how building trades work, visit the Indiana State Building and Construction Trades website.

People can contact the Fort Wayne Urban League at 206-745-3100 or Nicole Mays-Walker at the officer Administrator of Northeast Indiana Building Trades at 260-489-8574.

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