Reimagine Your Future

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  • April 8, 2019

It’s about that time here in the Twin Cities. Construction time! From high rises to roads to new builds. In fact, the upcoming construction outlook in Minnesota and North Dakota looks to be booming for 2019! In Minnesota, the construction industry is coming off a near-record year with construction activity showing strength in nearly every market segment. This has resulted in some of the lowest overall unemployment numbers we have seen at 2.8% for both MN & ND from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

This sounds great and all, but what does it really mean for people trying to get in the industry? Are people of color included in this percentage? Should I join a union? Why Summit Academy? These are legitimate questions and we will tackle each of them in a series of post about the construction industry here in the Twin Cities. But first, let’s talk about getting hired. There are many factors that go into this and we have pulled the 5 most asked questions about getting into the industry.


This one is a loaded answer with multiple layers and factors that go into it, but let’s keep this simple and say yes… technically. In the old days walking on a construction site and asking for a job was fairly easy, but in 2019 not so much. Employers have permit regulations, drug policies, and OSHA regulations they need to follow, just to name a few barriers to walking on a job site. Let’s role play for a second: let’s say you walk onto a job site, have your own tools, the bed of your work truck is beat up from previous jobs, a supervisor might take a look at this and say “You’re hired!” But, this is very rare. If you walk on a job site with no tools, no truck, and no experience, good luck! In our experience, at the very least you need to know the basics of the industry and who to talk to. That is where Summit comes in.


There is a lot to be said about unions in general so we will try to make this as simple as possible. You don’t have to join a union. However, the union is a great place to receive ongoing education, safety training and regular pay raises. The thing to note here is that, union or not, employers will always keep reliable workers.


This is an easy one. You can expect $$$$$$$$$$$$. The industry is booming. Have you seen the 35W S exit on 94 lately? Well, that’s because it’s a big ol’ pile of dirt right now — in other words, it’s “under construction”. Here’s the kicker, though — if you want to work this season, you need to be prepared to work. That means having adequate transportation, childcare, and proper tools. The industry needs apprentices and laborers aplenty, and that’s where you and Summit Academy come in.


We already touched a bit on this above, but just to clarify there are a few more to working in construction. The two big ones are experience and drug policies. If you have zero experience, the odds of you getting work are slim to none, that’s just a reality.

This one seems like a “no-brainer” but people still have issues with it. You WILL NOT get hired anywhere if you test positive for drugs. Construction work is dangerous and your actions can easily affect others around you. One mistake can have a domino effect, so it is imperative that you have a clear head. Here are a few more barriers:

  • Proper tools
  • Transportation
  • Attitude
  • Childcare
  • Unwillingness to learn and take instruction
  • Criminal record
  • OSHA card
  • Valid DL

If you have one or more of these barriers in front of you, don’t worry, Summit Academy can help with most of these.


Where do we start?! There are so many great ones, but let’s start with the one you probably care about most… money. Right now our construction graduates are averaging close to $18/hour, and that’s a starting wage. Let’s talk about how those students got there. 1. There is NO TUITION to attend Summit Academy OIC. It is paid for by FAFSA grants, private funding, and government contracts. You WILL PAY NOTHING to attend Summit. 2. This is a 20-week program. It is designed to get you trained and into the work field as fast and efficiently as possible. We also have tutoring and career services to assist you in finding the right career for you. 3. We help you with each of the barriers listed above and then some. Don’t have tools, we can help with that. Suspended DL, we can help with that. Need transportation, we can help with that. At this point I’m hoping you are catching my drift. 4, you will need to commit. If you want this career .we will help you get there — but you have to want it.

5. And this is the most important! The question you need to ask yourself is “Am I ready to make a better life for myself and is the construction industry right for me?” If the answer is yes, then our number is 612-377-0150. Give us a call!


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