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Carpentry students seeking house project for experience

5/15/2014 - West Side Leader
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By Maria Lindsay

The carpentry program offered for students at Copley, Norton, Barberton and Wadsworth high schools gives participants experience in actual construction work. Students are shown on the roof of one home they built and auctioned off.
The finished home is shown. The program is seeking a resident/subcontractor for this year’s project.
Photos courtesy of Scott Rader/Wadsworth High School
WADSWORTH — Students in the carpentry program offered through the Four Cities Educational Compact, which includes Copley, Norton, Barberton and Wadsworth high schools, are learning skills through on-site training as part of the program.

The carpentry program, which is housed at Wadsworth High School, is offered at two levels and culminates in actual construction work, according to Scott Rader, a Wadsworth school administrator who runs the Career Technical Education program for the compact.

Rader said the compact operates similarly to a career school, but instead of being housed in a stand-alone building, about 15 career programs for juniors and seniors are offered at the participating schools. Programs include subjects such as nursing, machine technologies, masonry/building trades, engineering and cosmetology.

Rader said the carpentry program has offered students experience in actual construction work by building a home that was then auctioned off. The program now offers experience through a partnership with a resident and/or subcontractor instead.

Prior to working on the home, students hone their skills by building a small barn and other projects, according to Rader. In class, they learn safety skills, how to use the tools and more.

In the partnership program, seniors and a few juniors perform work under the supervision of their instructors. That work revolves around various facets of the building project, including framing, drywall, painting, siding, roofing and more.

“This program gives students a real learning experience,” said Rader. “We could erect walls in the shop and tear them down, but that is not an authentic experience. It also gives the kids something they can take pride in and some experience to show a future employer. Most of these kids continue on in the construction field.”

Currently, the program is seeking a partner to provide this real-life experience to the carpentry students.

“The kids can start as early as late August and will go as far as they can with the project until May 15, 2015,” said Rader. “The students get experience and the builder gets free labor. For the right person, it could work out well.”

Rader said the building for the partnership program must be ready for framing by Aug. 30, with excavation, foundation and basement work complete and all necessary permits in place. He said the homeowner/subcontractor must pay for all materials used in construction, hire subcontractors for any work, including excavation, grading, concrete, foundation, plumbing, electrical and insulation and any other areas that the students cannot complete.

The cost for the resident/subcontractor to participate is $3,200, which is used to cover student travel expenses and tools, according to Rader.

To submit a project for the program or for more information, email srader@fourcities compact.org, with “Carpentry House” in the subject line, by May 27.

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