The Middletown Police Department is the newest client for seniors in the Construction program at Butler Tech’s D. Russel Lee Campus. The students are building an enclosed observation platform for the department’s outdoor firing range. It replaces an aging structure that was due for upgrades.
“What’s great about this is we’re building something that will stay around and last instead of taking it down because class is over,” says John McCoy, a senior in Construction.
Students are building frames, trusses, and other structural elements in their class to build a 182 sq. ft. house atop nine foot columns. In class, students are learning what new pieces to build and the skills they need to help further their progress. On the job site, they work as a team through every task to ensure each part is set, aligned, and nailed securely.
“Being out there really helps us grow individually and as a team,” explains McCoy. “As a team, we’ve been together for almost two years and understand each other even if no one else does, and it’s because of that we’re able to look out for each other and communicate.”
Clement Skinner, Butler Tech Construction instructor, finds this experience rewarding for his students because it not only helps them build character, but puts them that much closer to real-world situations construction workers deal with. “Projects like this are great because it instills a sense of civic duty in them and lets students truly feel what it’s like to work in the different elements, like the cold.”
Students visit the site weekly to continue adding to their project, which is scheduled to be completed in mid-January. In Spring 2018, students will start construction on a 1,200 sq. ft. roof system for the Fairfield Youth Football Association.