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Building the Construction Workforce of Tomorrow

Published Wednesday Oct 17, 2012

Like many industries, the construction sector will be losing a big chunk of talent in the coming years as baby boomers begin to retire. To help attract more young people to the trades and prepare the next generation to lead, the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) NH-Vermont Chapter recently established a young professionals group.

After multiple board meeting discussions, the ABC board decided we needed to bridge the gap between generations within the industry and our association, says Carlton Cooper, commercial sales representative for Merrimack Building Supply in Merrimack and the inaugural chair of the ABC Young Professionals Group. There are many companies that have senior members and owners who are getting ready to turn over the reins. Our mission is to cultivate these younger members professionally and educationally so they may look at being that next person to take over that company, or move up the corporate ladder.

Cooper says the young professionals group will offer opportunities for young professionals to network not only among themselves, but also with senior members of the industry so that they can learn from one another. Membership is free and open to anyone who works with a company affiliated with the construction industry, including general contractors, painters, insurance companies, and fleet management, among others. ABC's Young Professionals Group launched in May and held its first networking event in July, attracting 30 members. It now has about 55 members, Cooper says. 

In addition to networking, the group plans to offer seminars covering professional development, business ethics, project management, and work/life balance.

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