RVA BUILDS Program: Connecting  career opportunities with unrealized talent

The RVA BUILDS Program successfully launched its pilot phase on Sept. 24, 2018, and graduated its first class on Jan. 4.

RVA BUILDS is a collaborative effort connecting untapped talent with livable wage career path opportunities. In partnership with Communities At Work, Associated Builders and Contractors, Associated General Contractors of Virginia, various workforce development organizations, nonprofit community-based organizations, and construction employers, this work-based learning program is designed to give candidates a chance to work, learn and earn.

Recognizing the career paths offered in the construction industry, this supported transition for participants provides the opportunity to rotate through multiple specialties and employers in a pre-apprenticeship program while entering a living-wage career path.

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For 13 weeks, the pilot phase participants rotated among employer sites Tuesday through Friday, and spent Mondays in the classroom, focusing on building both “hard” and “soft” skills. The goal was to ensure that all participants were career ready and willing to commit to a career path and a specific employer for one year after completing the program.

Phase II began Jan. 14, with plans to start a new phase monthly.

For more information about the RVA BUILDS program, contact Dan Humphrey, Co-Founder/Director of Employer Engagement at Communities At Work at

(804) 293-0989.

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