Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Center

Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Students Help Build Display at Home and Garden Show

February 27th, 2013

Display For West Michigan Home and Garden Show Becomes a Learning Opportunity

The Home Builders Association of Greater Grand Rapids (HBA) will partner with the Home Builders Institute (HBI), a workforce training program at the Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Center, to create the Home & Garden Show grand entrance. The show opens February 28 and runs through March 3, 2013 at the DeVos Place.

The Home Builders Institute is the workforce development arm of the Home Builders Association, and has nearly 25 students locally who are learning the trades for the construction industry while enrolled at the Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Center, an employment training program administered by the U.S. Department of Labor that provides academic and career technical training to disadvantaged youth, ages 16-24. The HBI connects students with builders and the HBA so that they receive on-the-job training and development. The Home & Garden Show, an official event of the HBA, entrance is one of these projects.

“This event is an excellent opportunity for our students to work alongside industry professionals and learn new skills,” states Gretchen LaHaie, Business Community Liaison at the Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Center. “Job Corps is committed to giving-back to the community through service projects and welcomes projects like this that allow our students to volunteer while also gaining invaluable experience.”

“For us, it is a win-win, partnering with HBI,” says Emily Siebert, Executive Officer of the Home Builders Association. “Our organization has a passion for developing the next generation of the industry, and this is a great learning experience for the students who will be on-site working side-by-side with a professional builder and framing crew. We are so excited for this opportunity with the Home & Garden Show.”

The entrance will consist of a 22’ tall open-truss home structure, designed to be a space where show visitors will be able to learn about the home building and remodeling process, how to find a professional for any home project, and to learn about what the HBA does and it’s impact in the West Michigan Community.

Construction of the display will be Monday and Tuesday, February 25th and 26th. Students will be working with Berghuis Construction’s owner Josh Berghuis, and his framing crew to create the space for the HBA.

The Home Builders Association of Greater Grand Rapids (HBAGGR), a professional trade non-profit organization, was founded by 18 builders and chartered by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) in 1945. Its members are committed to providing quality homes, buildings, renovations, products and services for the entire region through adherence to ethical practices, community involvement, advocacy and education.