Texas & Louisiana On the Scene: February 2019
Local and national leaders, family and friends celebrated the accomplishments of 155 students during ABC Pelican Chapter’s fall 2018 graduation at the L’Auberge in Baton Rouge on Jan. 24. ICC Chairman Troy Bergeron of Turner Industries, ABC Pelican’s 2018 Industrial Contractors Council chairman (shown above left), said that the Baton Rouge Training Center had achieved a 75% retention rate.
Nine of the center’s craft students will be going to Long Beach, Calif., to compete in the 2019 National Craft Championships, including two January graduates. Ryan Langlois with Excel will represent the chapter in the electrical competition and Alvin Allen with Jacobs will compete in pipefitting.
Many graduates overcame big obstacles to complete their education. New Orleans native Sharon M. Ramsey, 62, who studied instrumentation, traveled 120 miles two days a week after work for the past three semesters to attend school. Ramsey, sponsored in her education by Jacobs Field Services, previously worked in nursing and accounting. After Hurricane Katrina, she volunteered with People Building Communities to help rebuild her hometown. Later, she joined ABC and decided to pursue a new career.
Allen, 32 (shown above right), completed a two-year pipefitting program. The St. Francisville, La., native also was sponsored by Jacobs Field Services and attended night classes after a full day of work.
Steve Greene, National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) vice president, said during the ceremony that learning craft skills represents “a huge opportunity” for graduates because jobs in the trades cannot be outsourced to another country.
Sundt Construction’s team celebrates groundbreaking for the Denton County Administration Complex Phase III in Denton, Texas, in December. The third phase involves construction of a four-story facility that will house a county commissioners court with a judge and commissioner’s suite and support services. Additionally, the county justice of the peace court and the constable and human resources departments will be housed in the facility, sited near the elections office and county health department on South Loop 288. The third phase is scheduled to be complete in 2020. Pictured at the ceremony, from left: Sahil Khandelwal, Lance G. Rokohl, James Leppo, Hal Hardister, Amber Simonson, Jay Ahn, Jon McKelvain and Charlie Taylor.
E.E. Reed Construction volunteers work quarterly at Lunches of Love, a nonprofit in Fort Bend County, Texas, that seeks to end childhood hunger by providing free sack lunches to children. Lunches of Love serves nutritious food Monday through Friday during extended school holidays and on weekends. Volunteers included (from left): Matt Lang, Mike Den Herder, Paige Olivares, Mariah Weatherstone, Bill Sciba, Patti Miller, Jennifer Dufour and Lizet Garcia.
Volunteers from Brasfield & Gorrie’s Dallas office built classroom space for GED and employment readiness courses at the Buckner Center for Humanitarian Aid. The classroom provides an improved learning space for Buckner International’s adult clients in East Dallas. The volunteers also sorted and bagged toys as holiday gifts. This is the fourth year Brasfield & Gorrie has partnered with Buckner International as part of its corporate social responsibility initiative.
Members of Freese and Nichols’ Oklahoma City office recently helped children paint and carve pumpkins at Positive Tomorrows, Oklahoma’s only elementary school specifically for children experiencing homelessness. The school works toward removing learning barriers by picking up students wherever they’re staying, providing them meals and connecting their families with services. The school is a United Way of Central Oklahoma partner agency.
Shown at the school’s playground, from left: Eric Waggoner, Jessica Gay, Kayla Martin, Tricia Hatley, Scott Hilborn, Brandon Huxford, Tim Vermillion and Luke Andreasen.