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February 12, 2020

Three Rivers College/AGC of Missouri Announce New Workforce Partnership

Construction Job Fair (for General Public) Scheduled Feb 26 & 27

Three Rivers College and the Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) announced a new workforce partnership designed to bring additional job training for the construction industry and new employment opportunities to Southeast Missouri. The collaboration will include career days, community outreach, education on available careers in construction, classes, certificate programs and other expanded curricula.

The program will kick-off with a General Public Construction Job Fair scheduled Wednesday, Feb. 26, from 1 to 4 p.m. and Thursday, Feb. 27, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Bess Activity Center on the Three Rivers College campus in Poplar Bluff.

 “Three Rivers College is excited about the workforce partnership with AGCMO,” said Will Cooper, director of workforce development for Three Rivers. “The construction industry has an immediate need for skilled labor. The partnership allows Three Rivers College and ACGMO to combine resources, providing the quality skills training that meets the current and future workforce demands in our region.”

According to Len Toenjes, CAE, AGCMO president, there are thousands of construction jobs available throughout the state, with Southeast Missouri contractors seeking more workers to build projects.

“The number one challenge our contractors face is finding qualified construction workers,” noted Toenjes, who began his own career as a carpenter. “These are good, well-paying jobs that also provide a great deal of job satisfaction. Currently there are approximately 122,000 construction workers in Missouri, but frankly, we need more!  What people don’t realize is that construction industry pay in Missouri averages nearly $60,000 per year, 20 percent higher than the state average for all private-sector employees.

“Three Rivers College already has some excellent programs to properly prepare people to enter the construction industry in the areas of commercial building, highway construction, industrial construction and heavy construction,” said Toenjes. “We hope to enhance those programs even further by adding curricula; developing training and intern programs; and expanding and developing a crane certification program. Plans also call for implementing a Supervisory Training and Construction Management program and expanding course work from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA).

“All of these programs have been designed with the help of our AGCMO/TRC Steering Committee, comprised of TRC leadership, local elected officials, AGCMO staff and contractors from Southeast Missouri,” added Toenjes. “We listened to their challenges and are working collaboratively with TRC to design the most effective program possible.”

AGCMO member Colby Robertson, president of Robertson Contractors Inc. in Poplar Bluff, serves as a member of the AGCMO/TRC Steering Committee. “Robertson Contractors is pleased to learn the Construction Workforce Development Program will launch this spring at Three Rivers College,” said Robertson. “The program offers a precise curriculum that will ensure graduates are ready to transition into an industry offering countless opportunities. We want to thank AGCMO, its associates and Three Rivers College for addressing this need for both students and employers. Robertson Contractors is proud to support and assist those looking to start their careers in heavy civil construction.”

For information on the Feb. 26-27 General Public Construction Job Fair, contact Will Cooper in the Office of Workforce Development at Three Rivers College at 573-840-9682. For contractors/employers/suppliers interested in reserving booth space at the job fair, contact Jackson Bostic, AGCMO representative, at 573-634-3510.

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri is the leading voice of the construction industry in Missouri, representing over 500 commercial, industrial, heavy and highway contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties throughout Missouri. www.agcmo.org

Three Rivers College is committed to contributing to the quality of life in Southeast Missouri with quality, affordable higher education opportunities and community services that support and encourage the economic, civic, and cultural vitality of the region. For more information about college and workforce programs and upcoming events, visit trcc.edu.

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