Throughout the summer, the Mentoring a Girl in Construction (MAGIC) Camp is spending a week with high school girls to introduce them to careers in construction. MAGIC Camp is a free one-week long day camp that is available to girls aged 13 to 18 across the United States. This is an initiative to create a sustainable labor pool in the construction industry while exposing young women to careers that they may not have previously considered. According to their website, the purpose of the camp is to give the next generation of women an “opportunity to learn about the countless avenues of employment available to women in the construction industry and to engage these young women via hands-on training in basic construction skills. This opportunity to gain marketable skills and to experience the exhilaration of successfully performing difficult tasks builds self-confidence and boosts self-image.”
The high school girls start the week with a safety briefing and an explanation of PPE which they then use throughout the week. They spend the week learning to read plans, meeting professional women who have succeeded in construction, performing hands on concrete quality tests, performing basic carpentry skills including making a tool box and finish the week touring projects under construction with a major General Contractor in the area.
On top of getting hands-on experience, the students are also introduced to female role models who have successfully worked in all areas of the construction industry. From Southwire, Kathy Jo Van and Amanda Gunn attended as chaperones and participated in some of the tours and training that the girls received. Van reflected “it is so rewarding to see the enthusiasm in these girls and to be a part of helping them see a future in construction.” Southwire also sponsored camp for one girl and donated some supplies to the students.
Peggy Newquist and Michaelann Agoranos, co-ordinators of the Chicago Chapter Camp NAWIC, seconded Van’s remark. “We received overwhelmingly positive feedback from the girls and they all agreed the camp opened their minds to the wide variety of career possibilities in construction.”
If you have a young woman in mind who could benefit from MAGIC Camp, the camp runs until the end of July in Atanta and has application information available on mentoringagirlinconstruction.com. To learn more about how Southwire is helping to create a sustainable workforce from the next generation, stay tuned to our blog.