• Mario Ghilotti Family Foundation Makes Multi-year Pledge to Expand High School Construction Training

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    January 10, 2020
    San Rafael, CA (January 9, 2020) – The Mario Ghilotti Family Foundation has made a $300,000 commitment to the Career Technical Education Foundation and Marin Builders Association to support expansion of a successful local youth training program called the North Bay Construction Corps (NBCC).
    The North Bay Construction Corps, launched in Sonoma County in 2017 and expanded to Marin County in 2019, is a 5-month training program that introduces high school seniors to careers and jobs in construction and various trades. The program, entering its fourth year in the North Bay, has already recruited more than 150 young men and women from five north bay counties who are entering their last semester of high school.
    The NBCC includes classes that meet one night a week and one Saturday a month and are exclusively taught by local construction industry representatives to give students a sampling of what it’s like to work in a variety of trades and to expose them to multiple employers.  Students learn the fundamentals of tool handling, safety, electrical, plumbing, carpentry, solar, and more. They also earn a variety of certifications recognized by the industry and giving them a significant competitive advantage as they seek entry level work or further training such as an apprenticeship.

    The program culminates in a 2-week Boot Camp during the summer that allows students to practice their skills and to experience first-hand the day-to-day work life in the industry while earning a scholarship. Along with trade-based technical skills, students learn soft skills such as communication, teamwork, problem solving, leadership, and working on deadlines, which are all applied throughout the program.
    “A national survey of home builders conducted recently revealed a startling statistic, one that likely applies to the Marin County,” said Rick Wells, CEO for Marin Builder’s Association (MBA). “For every five construction workers who will retire over the next several years, only one new worker is entering the field.  That is unsustainable.” Wells added that MBA is grateful to have the support and leadership from Mike Ghilotti and the Mario Ghilotti Family Foundation whose support has been instrumental in ensuring the program expansion to Marin County.
    The Mario Ghilotti Family Foundation provided the initial seed funding to launch the first class in Marin County in 2019 located at Terra Linda High School.  In its first year, 21 students from Marin County participated in the semester long program with 14 graduating from the boot camp, earning a $750 stipend and participating in the job fair for entry level jobs. The Marin chapter is already seeing a growing interest in the program with twenty-seven high school seniors accepted into the program for 2020.
    The CTE Foundation, who helped develop the program in Sonoma County, partnered with Marin Builders Association and the Marin County Office of Education for the Marin program.  According to the CTE Foundation, the multi-year pledge from MGFF will be used to leverage and supplement the current support for the Construction Corps program in Marin County and will provide for better access through the expansion to additional classes and into other parts of the county.
    “It is so important to provide engaging opportunities that inspire the next generation of tradespeople,” says Mike Ghilotti, Owner of Ghilotti Bros., Inc. “The Construction Corps is critical to ensuring a workforce pipeline for the industry and provides an outstanding opportunity for young adults to discover and build rewarding careers in this industry.”

    Related article in the Marin Independent Journal
    Additional support has come from two local rotary clubs including the Mission San Rafael Rotary Club and Sausalito Rotary Club.  Makita has also pledged to help the new program with the donation of power tools for students to use during the program and in Boot Camp. For more information on how you can participate and/or support the program directly contact:  John Paul Butti, Program Coordinator (415) 450-8382.

    Marin Builders Association
    The Marin Builders Association serves the construction industry by promoting high ethical and professional standards, providing quality programs and services to our members, and working responsibly with our community for the enhancement of the building industry.
    Marin County Office of Education
    The Marin County Office of Education offers programs and services for students, teachers, and families in Marin County. MCOE services eighteen school districts in our county, supporting technology and educational services in public as well as private K-12 institutions.
    Mario Ghilotti Family Foundation
    The Mario Ghilotti Family Foundation (MGFF) was established after Mario passed away in 2010 to continue his and his wife Eva’s legacy and life-long commitment to charitable giving in support of the education of youth and community growth in Marin and other counties in which we work.  Over the years, MGFF has offered numerous scholarships to deserving students and funded worthwhile educational and athletic programs benefiting youth and providing funding to educational institutions and other nonprofit organizations that serve our youth.
    The Career Technical Education (CTE) Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that works to expand and enhance career technical training and work readiness for local students.  The Foundation works to align education with the workforce and economic development needs of the region in a manner that creates an enriched learning experience for students. Since its founding in 2013, CTE Foundation has invested over $3 Million in local schools and career exploration and training opportunities for students.

    Rick Wells, Chief Executive Officer
    (415) 462-1220, rick@marinbuilders.com
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