"Industry participation is key to the success of today's career and technical education programs," said Iowa Department of Education Director Judy Jeffrey. "Keeping pace with advancements in technology and industry practices can only be accomplished through close partnerships with industry experts. MBI's support of this project is a model of the industry-education partnership that is so valuable in our efforts to prepare students for Iowa's future workforce."
The department and MBI are partnering with local schools and community colleges to help students begin their education in construction technology while still in high school and then continue to a community college or post-secondary program.
"Our members see the need for private industry to be part of the solution in the budget crisis the state is in at this time," said MBI President and CEO Scott Norvell. "We do not want our vital training and feeder programs to suffer at a time when they are necessary in preparing a skilled workforce to rebuild Iowa." MBI has more than 2,100 members statewide.
The funds will be used to help education and construction industry representatives develop statewide standards for commercial construction education and provide information to students on how they can advance their career in construction. In addition, funding will assist teams of local school district, community college, construction industry representatives in creating model programs of study, or a proposed sequence of courses, that are connected to careers in the construction industry.
Career and technical education in Iowa is provided, in part, through programs of study that link secondary and post-secondary education. Schools can organize instruction and student experiences into "career clusters." The clusters are groupings of careers with similar skills or common themes based on a certain industry or profession. They assist students, parents, and employers to understand how curriculum relates to the career opportunities from which students can choose.
For more information on career and technical education in Iowa, please click here.