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Labor Management Education Committee – Lee Graham, Summer 2018

It has been a busy spring at Labor Management. As we roll into that all important busy season of construction in Michigan, we would like to give a quick recap of the great things we are partnered with.

In March, we completed ourlast two Contractor Roundtables for the year. In Detroit, we had great attendance that included the following contractors: Adamo Demolition, Ajax Paving, APM,  Aristeo Construction, Atlantic Plant Maintenance, Barton Malow, Blaze Contracting, Build Initiative, C I Contracting, CA Hull, CAM, Chrysler, Cloverdale Equipment, Commercial Contracting, Concrete Cutting & Breaking, Connelly Crane, Dan’s Excavating, Douglas N. Higgins Inc., Detroit Renewable Power, Eagle Excavation, Edward C. Levy, Florence Cement, Great Lakes Fabricators and Erectors Assoc., Hardman Construction, Hoffman Brothers, Ideal Contracting, MAA, MDOT, Michigan CAT, Midwest Steel, Miller Pipeline Corp., MITA, Olympia Entertainment, One Way Service, Inc., Power Process Piping, RBV Contracting, Roncelli Inc., Stante Excavating, Stoneco, Walbridge, Wayne County Airport Authority.
We also had the pleasure of the attendance of Warren C. Evans, Wayne County Executive and Sammie Lukaskiewicz, MI Department of Talent and Economic Development (Going Pro), both of whom spoke to the group.

Our last Contractor Roundtable took place in Grand Rapids, where we were joined by some of our Signatory Contractors: AGC, Alpine Pipeline, Barton Malow, Consumers Energy, CR Meyer, Cross Concrete Pumping, Grand River Construction, Great Lakes Fabricators and Erectors Assoc., GZA, Hydaker-Wheatlake Company, Kent Power, Michigan CAT, Michigan Paving & Materials, MITA, Nashville Construction, Northern A-1 Industrial Services LLC, Rieth-Riley Construction Co., Ryan Incorporated Central and The Right Place.
We had Britni Birt from Michigan Department of Talent and Economic Development (Going Pro) and Ruth Kelly, Second Ward Commissioner speak to the group of attendees. Other attendees included 92nd District Representative, Terry Sabo and Candidate for the 91st State House, Andy O’Riley.

Speaking of Grand Rapids, we once again partnered with the City of Grand Rapids in the Grand Rapids MI CareerQuest. This event brings thousands of students from the west side of the state to one of the largest Career Fairs under one roof in Michigan. It is such a popular event, they now have plans to have a MI CareerQuest Southeast! It will take place at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi this coming November 28th. These are great events that allow us to bring our simulators to give students a hands-on experience. We look forward to participating in the first ever MI CareerQuest Southeast.

We recently attended the Michigan Safety Conference, where we teamed up with Michigan Urban Search and Rescue (MUSAR) for live demos. The objective of the conference is to teach how to have a healthy and safe work environment. The conference is an important opportunity to educate about the safety techniques and advancements that make us all safer on the job site.

This year’s National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) Driving Next North Central Region Forum was held in Detroit. We partnered with CAT Simulators for the event. The use of simulators allow us to give an actual experience of operating a crane, bulldozer or grader that is larger and taller than the booth or area we are allowed to occupy. This gives the user an amazing opportunity to see what our members do on a daily basis and is a great and hands-on way to give visitors an idea of what we are all about. The simulators are always popular, and we are proud to have been a sponsor at such a great event emphasizing the opportunities for women in our field.

Rain did not dampen the spirits of the thousands of students who enjoyed this year’s Construction Career Days at the OE324 Construction Career Center in Howell – in fact, many enjoyed the little mud that much more. It was our biggest yet, an increase of 800 students from last year, maxing out the number of students we could have for the two-day event! We are thankful for all the volunteers and equipment that is donated every year for the event. With an actual physical hands-on experience on some of the equipment and machines we use daily, a student develops a real connection and a true understanding of what it’s like to be an Operator.

The 8th Annual Construction Science Expo, sponsored by OE324, MDOT, BCF, MPM/Cadillac; HNTB, Cadillac Asphalt, ASCE, Levy Corp, LiUNA, ACEC, MITA, MiSci, MAA, MCA, APAM, AEW, OHM, CBTS and Carpenters, was a great success as well. With our simulator inside, and two excavators and the spyder crane outside, hundreds of Detroit students attended were able to try their hands at the heavy equipment that is helping to rebuild Detroit every day. Students are always more engaged in the process when they recognize the equipment from their own neighborhoods. The increase of projects in Detroit has certainly peaked the curiosity and interest of students for a career as an Operating Engineer.

Here is a list of some of the ongoing community events

All of these ongoing efforts encourage the Operating Engineers of tomorrow and also let the community know all of the work we are doing on a daily basis – to build, to maintain, to operate and to give back. Have a great summer and stay safe!

Lee Graham
Executive Director LMEC