Construction Academy helps build bright futures


High school students graduating from the Kenai Peninsula Borough School district have many opportunities for building their futures, and not all have to involve another couple years of sitting in classrooms for a college degree. Some paths lead straight to successful careers in the construction industry.


Getting students acquainted with those opportunities was the purpose of Alaska Construction Career Day, held April 27 at the Soldotna Sports Center. The Alaska Department of Transportation, city of Soldotna and the school district partnered to organize the event, which was such a success another is already being planned for next year.

“I think it went very well. All the kids were excited. They seemed to enjoy themselves. I think they’ll be eager to come back next year and maybe talk it up a little bit and get even more kids to come,” said Thomas Jenkins, a coordinator of the event.

The event was open to high school students from across the district, and wide participation was a highlight of the day, Jenkins said.

Industry and business representatives from some of the largest companies in the state attended to present a wealth of information about career opportunities, apprenticeships and training programs. For students interested in building trades, machinery and working with tools, the day was a wonderland of hands-on activities in carpentry, welding, heavy-equipment operation and more.

“The whole premise was to get high school students interested in the construction industry, and let them know there’s alternatives to secondary education where they can get into the workforce right away, with internships and apprenticeships and that sort of thing. Overall, I think it was a great success,” Jenkins said.