It seems that people are always saying there are no good paying jobs in this area, but at a recent trades job fair, one could find out the complete opposite.People who came out to share their trade had many things to offer local people who want to learn and work.
Dr. John Valentine, Professor, Department of English and Humanities at Shawnee State University, arranged a job fair of trades for some local students on Thursday. Valentine said there were 30 people who attended. Nineteen of them were CAPE students and there were 11 walk-ins. “We were a bit snakebit when it came to attendance. Two of the CAPE schools were closed due to the flu. CAPE also suspended 11 students. The eight to ten PHS students slated to attend, could not come at the last minute, due to a test they were required to take,” said Valentine.
Nine building trades were represented by unions: Laborers, Iron Workers, Painters and Allied Trades, Electrical Workers, Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers, Operating Engineers, Sheet Metal Workers, Carpenters, and Millwrights.
”Both Andrea Cline, the CAPE School Counselor, and the various union representatives, were impressed with the level of engagement on the part of the students,” Valentine said. “There were a number of reasons for this. Whereas College costs money, apprenticeships do not. Building Trade Union jobs can provide a good standard of living without incurring thousands of dollars in student debt. One can ‘shop’ apprenticeships, just as one can ‘shop’ majors in college. There is a sense of pride in building something concrete and substantial that will remain in place after you move on,”
Valentine said that there is also a growing appreciation that the building trades require the use of human forms of intelligence up and beyond the logical/mathematical and verbal forms of intelligence that constitute one’s IQ score – spatial intelligence, bodily-kinesthetic intelligence, and intrapersonal intelligence. He continued by saying a logical/math whiz might be a poor blueprint reader because of poor spatial intelligence, a verbal whiz might be a danger to himself or others on a construction site, because of poor bodily-kinesthetic intelligence. Valentine said when practicing many building trades, it can involve physical risks and stress, so, therefore, good intrapersonal intelligence is a must.
“It has been argued that one reason that the German manufacturing economy has outperformed the American manufacturing economy over the past several decades is because there is deep-seated cultural respect for these non-mathematical, non-verbal, forms of human intelligence that goes back to the Medieval Guild System,” Valentine said. “When a craftsman achieves the status of Master, it is announced in all the local papers. When an academic receives a Ph.D., it is not normally announced.”
He said “in ancient Greece, before the philosopher, Plato came along, it was common to refer to an excellent carpenter or craftsman as “wise,” as having a special intelligence or combination of intelligence that should be recognized. Today, we increasingly recognize the exercise of this human intelligence in the building trades.”
Mark Johnson, Business Manager of Tri-State Building Trades Union attending the event, as he represents each of the trades at the fair. He was quick to point out that the people who built the new bypass Ohio State Route 823 were there in attendance. Brent Butcher along with Ashley Casto were there representing Operating Engineers Ohio Local 18. Casto is an operating engineer out of Logan and Butcher is an Operating Engineer Instructor. Their website states, “We train on cranes, forklifts, scrapers, bulldozers and more. We have a commitment to equip you with everything you need to gain knowledge and the skills required, to have a long and prosperous career!” When asked if she was more like a woman in a man’s world, Casto said that it used to be that way, but not so much now.
Johnson stated that some may not know, but, “If you are a military veteran, honorably discharged, and if you have a DD214, you go Helmetstohardhats.org you don’t have to take a test to get into the program, the test is you served your country honorably.” Johnson added that if someone was possibly willing to locate there are more than enough opportunities for training and learning, and get a good paying job on top.
Also represented Thursday at the job fair, was Dave Stone, of TSHD(Tanner, Stone, Holsinger, Donges) Architects.
Another group was there from I.U. Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Luke Henry and Richard Moon, they were there with their bricks, letting the students try their hand in laying brick.
Local 577 Plumbers & Pipefitters union in Portsmouth, was represented by Kenny Baily. Baily said he would love to see these men and women and any local man or woman interested in becoming an apprentice join them.
Reach Kimberly Jenkins (740) 353-3101 ext. 1928