On Thursday 9/27/18 Marshall Exteriors had the opportunity to participate in a countywide Career Carnival. This event featured hands-on activities and demonstrations by professionals from local businesses and higher education institutions. The reason behind the carnival was to reach out to students before they enter high school. The coordinators of the event stated that their hope was that “this will give them some direction and perhaps spark an interest in a field they may not have thought of before”.
Students rotated through stations set up to show job opportunities in six career zones; Arts and Humanities, Business and Information Systems, Engineering and Technology, Health Services, Natural, and Agricultural Sciences and Human and Public Service.
In a day and age where trade workers are becoming scarcer by the year, Marshall Exteriors looks for every opportunity to impact the future of our work. Walking into the Career Carnival we knew two things; we knew that the best carpenters we have started out as youngsters that liked to tinker and build. We also knew that as a society we are raising students to live and breath technology. One of our challenges in preparing to engage 8th-grade students was come up with a safe activity that would show them not only how cool it is working for a construction company (because it is cool) but how they could earn a good living doing so.
The Marshall Exteriors Production Manager, Bill, oversaw the activities of the morning. In building 1 we set up two activities that would show the kids how to measure, quote and sell a project. Finding out how much it’ll cost is the first step in any project, right? We showed the students how we use Bluetooth technology with our own pricing modules to size the project. Students used a laser measurer and got a chance to see how that Excel class they have to take will prove to be handy. In this exercise, the students quickly found the square footage of a space while determining the cost of different materials needed to finish that space. The kids couldn’t believe how we simplified the processes that they had seen their parents painstakingly take with every home improvement project.
The second activity we offered was designing a home exterior remodel using 3D modeling. Mason and Chrisie were able to talk with the students about how impactful it is for homeowners to visualize project changes for their home. The kids were literally “wowed” when they touched the screen and the entire look of the home began to transform. The kids were asked questions about what they liked or didn’t like about the house they are growing up in and guided through decision making to reveal a home they loved the look of. A home they were proud of! The purpose of this exercise was to talk with students about how communication skills and technology combined can build a solid career as a “Salesperson” for a construction company like ours.