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Denver Urban Renewal Authority (DURA) Contracts the Academy for Skilled Worker Training

BuildStrong Academy Blog.

Student cutting wood

Oakwood Homes’ training academy expands under city’s Construction Employment Opportunities grant

DENVER (September 5, 2017) Colorado Homebuilding Academy is pleased to announce a $100,000 partnership with Denver Urban Renewal Authority (DURA) under the Construction Employment Opportunities program. As Denver’s economy continues to grow, the region’s construction industries – in particular the homebuilding industries – are seeing record expansion. To keep pace, DURA is investing funds earmarked for workforce training to fill the skilled labor shortage across the construction trades.

Colorado Homebuilding Academy is an industry-driven workforce training organization for the construction trades. A consortium of regional construction businesses led by Oakwood Homes collaborates with the Academy to develop innovative training programs that match the exact skill needs of employers. Designed by construction and education leaders, the Academy’s programs streamline workforce development by implementing the best practices of existing industry training under one roof.

The DURA contract will fund tuition for 76 recruits for three training programs at Colorado Homebuilding Academy over the course of one year. These programs were selected for DURA funding based on projected industry skilled labor gaps at the entry and mid-tier levels across Denver’s construction workforce.

First is Construction Skills Bootcamp, the Academy’s entry-level training program. Bootcamp students have genuine desire to enter the construction industry, but lack the skills training necessary for that first construction job. Next is the Academy’s Superintendent Training, a mid-level upskilling program developed in partnership with University of Denver – Burns School of Real Estate and Construction Management. Last is the Academy’s Contractor Development series, courses train existing small construction outfits – often subcontractors – on the business skills needed to expand operations.

Colorado’s construction industry is booming, but with unemployment at record lows businesses are struggling to fill skilled labor gaps. To find new workers for a growing industry, Colorado Homebuilding Academy embraces populations like under-employed and unemployed adults, transitioning military veterans, and returning citizens.

“The Academy’s training-to-placement approach is working for both our students and our industry partners,” said Michael Smith, Director of Colorado Homebuilding Academy. “We see ourselves as an industry-wide solution for the skilled labor shortage plaguing construction. With support from DURA, and others, the Academy is expanding its skilled workforce training.”