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Building Our Future

The inaugural Summer Careers Academy program, called "Building Our Future," is a registered youth apprenticeship program (pre-apprenticeship) in the skilled construction trades. The eight-week summer program offers students (age 16-24) with free career training and a paid work experience (Learning Wage, $12/hour) in a promising career pathway.


More than fifty employers have engaged with the Summer Careers Academy over the last year to help develop the model and the following 11 employers have taken the additional step of joining the inaugural cohort, hiring a Pre-Apprentice, and agreeing to the $12 per hour Learning Wage. These 11 employers are diverse in size and sector with small, mid-size, and large employers from the public and private sectors:

While the employer application period for the 2022 cohort has closed, employers from all sectors and of all sizes with career opportunities in the skilled trades are encouraged to participate in future cohorts. Interested employers should contact HBA Summer Careers Academy Program Coordinator, Heather Kasey, at (919) 357-2878 (cell).


All youth and young adults in Orange County (aged 16-24) are encouraged to apply for future Summer Careers Academy programs, which are specially-designed to meet the needs of youth and young adults from refugee and migrant families as well as low income students and students of color. No prior experience required and participants:

  1. Receive competitive salary, support (food, transportation, and language services), and a complimentary toolbox and tools.
  2. Earn high school credit and industry-recognized credentials (NCCEROSHA-10, CPR/First Aid) as well as college prior learning credit and access to Apprenticeships and college scholarships.
  3. Become prepared for immediate, full-time employment.

The application period for the 2022 "Building Our Future" program of the Summer Careers Academy has closed and the inaugural cohort is underway! Those who are interested in future cohorts should complete the Participant Interest Form and contact HBA Summer Careers Academy Program Coordinator, Heather Kasey, at (919) 357-2878 (cell).


The training, assessment, certification, and career development standards are based on the respected and widely-adopted National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) core construction curriculum. The rigorous, competency-based and industry-recognized career and technical education curriculum prepares students for careers in the construction trades, including occupations in carpentry, plumbing, electrical, masonry, and heating and air conditioning.


This is an eight-week summer career training program from June 14, 2022 through August 5, 2022. The first week (June 14-17) is in the classroom at Cedar Ridge High School and the remaining seven weeks include both in-classroom training (Mondays and Fridays from 8:30am - 4:00pm) and paid work experiences on job sites (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, and the hours are negotiated with each employer).


The inaugural program is made possible through generous contributions from the following: