Kent State University and Turner School of Construction Return With Third Installment of Workshop Series
The workshops run monthly from September through May, covering everything from the academics of construction to strategies for success in the construction field. Kent State’s College of Aeronautics and Engineering also is contributing to the effort by providing its own expertise and education on the topic.
“Kent State partnered with Turner School of Construction in 2016 in order to provide development and to create an opportunity for success for current and future contractors who are looking to build and scale their companies” says Veronica Cook-Euell, the Supplier Diversity program manager.
The program, which is held at Kent State, was designed to enhance Turner’s already successful, existing construction-management training program and add relevant content based on the knowledge a contractor would need to do business with a state entity such as Kent State.
“We accomplished this when we added content that would create an understanding of state of Ohio construction requirements,” Ms. Cook-Euell says. “We also provided the academics in construction led by professors from our Construction Management program and mentors from our Office of University Architect.”
The workshop takes a deeper dive on tough subjects such as bidding, estimating, scheduling and soft skills as well as consulting from Ms. Cook-Euell.
Turner’s original program was established with the city of Cleveland in 1969, and it continues to run its programs annually. Turner awards more than $1 billion each year to small, minority, women, disadvantaged and veteran-owned businesses across the country.
“The program has expanded to almost every market in which we have a presence,” says Jason Jones, vice president and general manager of Turner Construction. “To date, more than 37,000 contractors overall have completed it.”
This year, the joint program hit a record number of attendees with 24 construction-type businesses. Successes from the first two installments of the workshop series fuel the project.
Julie Brandle, president of Metis Construction, is a graduate of the first Workshop Series under this partnership.
“I had a fantastic experience with the KSU/Turner Construction program,” Ms. Brandle says. “This intensive workshop for minority- and women-owned businesses offered the opportunity to brush up on some key areas.”
Ms. Cook-Euell reaches out to owners of construction-type businesses who would potentially fit the program. That is how Ms. Brandle became enrolled.
“We’re drawing in more and more excellent construction-type businesses looking to scale,” Ms. Cook-Euell says. “We strive to identify companies that we can contribute to in their development.”
As for the future, the program will continue to be held in the coming years in hopes to further local construction-type businesses.
“There are no signs of stopping,” Ms. Cook-Euell says.
To learn more about Kent State’s Procurement/Supplier Diversity program and the Kent State/Turner School of Construction Workshop Series, visit www.kent.edu/procurement/diversity.