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McCarthy’s Construction 101 Event Offers High School Girls Insight into Construction Careers

by: Jessica Hoover
Thirty-three high school girls in Orange County, California, were recently introduced to potential careers and opportunities in the construction industry through McCarthy Building Companies’ Construction 101 event at the Newport Beach office. Aiming to inspire the next generation of women in construction, the full-day workshop provided a safe, hands-on experience for the girls to learn the basic elements of various construction trades.

Industry studies show that 74 percent of teen girls said they were interested in STEM, with 81 percent considering a career in a specific STEM field. But only 13 percent will pursue that career. And with women representing only 9.9 percent of building industry workers, events like this one are important to encourage girls to consider construction as a career path.

“Construction offers the opportunity to help create something that makes a significant impact. It transforms entire communities and changes landscapes,” said Manasi Pitkar, Senior Preconstruction Director at McCarthy Building Companies. “It is important to create awareness that there are career paths like construction engineering or working in the construction trades that are high paying and extremely fulfilling. Early exposure allows for exploration of the endless list of craft careers or college degrees and enables them [to] make informed decisions that will impact their future.”

At the Construction 101 event, McCarthy mentors and industry trade partners worked with and guided the girls (ages 14-18) through a variety of hands-on construction trade activities. The activities taught the students to work together and effectively communicate with their peers and mentors, as well as instilling self-confidence and a safety mindset that is applicable in other aspects of their lives. The activities included:

  • Building lamps with Rosendin Electric
  • Using a laser machine with Hilti
  • Mini-excavator instruction with Castle Contracting
  • Metal framing and drywall with McCarthy
  • Building a metal toolbox with Southland Industries

“I am truly moved and inspired by the commitment shown by McCarthy partners in supporting and nurturing the next generation of female leaders in the construction industry,” said Mike Myers, President of McCarthy Building Companies Southern California Region. “These young women left our McCarthy Construction 101 event knowing they were capable and that there are a wealth of career opportunities and new skill sets right within their reach. These young women represent the future, and it fills me with a sense of hope and pride for the future of our industry.”

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