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Build Your Future Arizona Established to Level the Playing Field for Careers in Construction

10/16/2019 Press Release

ALACHUA, Fla. — With a focus on empowering people to build their future, Build Your Future Arizona (BYF Arizona) was established through a private-sector, industry-driven campaign of the Greater Phoenix Chamber Foundation in partnership with the national Build Your Future (BYF) initiative. BYF Arizona showcases the incredible opportunities available for people to find fulfilling, high-paying careers in the construction professions — careers that can be started right out of high school, with minimum training, and allow for earning money while you learn.

The campaign is led by a steering committee made up of representatives from the more than 35 construction businesses who have invested over two million dollars in the effort thus far. The initiative is supported by a number of community partners, including the American Subcontractors Association of Arizona (ASA), Arizona Builders Alliance (ABA), Arizona Masonry Council (AMC), Associated Minority Contractors of Arizona (AMCA) and the Construction Financial Management Association (CFMA – Valley of the Sun Chapter).

“To me, BYF Arizona is our industry’s effort to educate and inform the Greater Phoenix community about what many of us have known for quite some time: that individuals can make a great living and build a lifelong career in construction,” shares Mike Brewer, Steering Committee Chair, CEO of Brewer Companies/Benjamin Franklin Plumbing.

BYF Arizona aims to provide education about a great path to success that the community may not have known about. For those who do not believe four-year colleges are a good fit — or who do not believe the debt is worth the value received — they can achieve their dreams via professional construction careers.

The first step is raising awareness about the high-potential careers available in the skilled crafts. In addition, BYF Arizona is working to increase applications to employers, decrease time to productivity and increase retention. Find more information at Arizona.byf.org.

“BYF Arizona will lead the way in educating people on how rewarding it is to be a craft professional and restore respect and pride to those wearing hard hats and building Arizona,” states Mike Bontrager, Steering Committee Fundraising Chair, SW region president of Adolfson & Peterson Construction.

Despite positive trends and record levels of construction activity in the Greater Phoenix area, 93% of respondents in a 2016 survey said the labor shortage is preventing their business from growing. There are an estimated 155,000 additional openings projected in construction through September of 2022. The industry has come together to create solutions that ensure continued prosperity for individuals and economic growth for the Greater Phoenix region.

“Construction drives the economy in Arizona. As one of the fastest growing states, it is imperative that we have a construction workforce available to meet the relocation and expansion needs of our businesses. We have over 200 people moving to Phoenix daily and they need a place to call home. We need a qualified workforce to build Arizona,” said Todd Sanders, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Chamber Foundation.

It is not too late to join the initiative. BYF Arizona will be a multi-year effort and there are many ways to get involved — including as an investor. For more information, contact BYF Arizona Project Manager Josh Umar at jumar@phoenixchamber.com or 602.495.6489.

In addition, while BYF resources are available for any organization, BYF partners have the ability to customize material with their own branding and information, which can contribute greatly to the success of their individual state campaigns. For more information on partnering with BYF, please visit byf.org.

About Build Your Future — Build Your Future (BYF) is a national image enhancement and recruitment initiative for the construction industry. Its mission is to recruit the next generation of craft professionals by making career and technical education a priority in secondary schools, shifting negative public perception about careers in the construction industry and providing a path from ambition, to training, to job placement as a craft professional. BYF provides a number of resources to assist industry, education and military organizations in achieving these goals. For more information, visit byf.org

About the Greater Phoenix Chamber Foundation — Launched in 2016, the Greater Phoenix Chamber Foundation carries out charitable and education objectives by conducting research, forming partnerships and hosting events focused on education, workforce development, wellness and community development. 

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