October 3, 2022 at 11:32 p.m.

Editor’s note: The following is the transcript of a live interview with Dhaval Gajjar of Clemson University, Tony Lamanna of Arizona State University, Bill Good, former NRCA CEO and Alison L. LaValley, Roofing Alliance Executive Director. You can read the interview below or listen to the podcast. 

Speaker 1:
Welcome to Roofing Road Trips with Heidi. Explore the roofing industry through the eyes of a long-term professional within the trade. Listen for insights, interviews and exciting news in the roofing industry today.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Hello and welcome to another Roofing Road Trips from RoofersCoffeeShop. My name is Heidi Ellsworth. We have a podcast today that is so unique and so different and really on the front edge of what has to be happening in the roofing industry, and that’s the next generation. How are we getting the next generation of roofing professionals into the roofing industry, and the people who have been really working at this every single day is the Roofing Alliance, The Foundation of NRCA.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Today, we have Bill Good, who is a former CEO of NRCA and works with the Roofing Alliance. We have the executive director, Allison LaValley, executive director of the Roofing Alliance, and then we have two guests from major construction management universities, Dhaval Gajjar of Clemson and Tony Lamanna of Arizona State University.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Welcome, everyone, to the show.

Bill Good:
Thank you. Thanks.

Tony Lamanna:
Thank you, Heidi.

Allison LaValley:
Thank you, Heidi.

Heidi Ellsworth:
As you know, I love this topic. I’m so excited to be able to sit in on the construction management meetings with the Roofing Alliance and also be on the CTE committee with NRCA. The student competition, best thing ever, and all the great things that you’re doing to get more kids involved in roofing through the construction management schools has been amazing.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Let’s start and, Bill, maybe you can start by letting everybody know how this all started. How did the Construction Management Initiative get started with the Roofing Alliance?

Bill Good:
Sure, Heidi. Yeah, like a lot of good alliance projects, it started with one person with an idea and then it went from there into what is today a really major undertaking of the alliance. Eight or nine years ago, I think maybe nine years ago, Dennis Conway, a good, long-time NRCA member, a former NRC president, asked if he could have five minutes at the end of a meeting because he had an idea he wanted to present. That idea was that we should take a look at getting involved with construction management schools. It happened that Dennis is an alumni of Colorado State University, and he told the alliance members he thought that we were missing out as an industry on an opportunity, first of all, to help educate young people coming into the construction industry and, second and more important, to be able to attract them to the roofing industry.

Bill Good:
That is how the journey began. Dennis and I, as a first step, went out to Colorado State University and met with the then head of the program named Mostafa Khattab. Mostafa turned out to be our mentor as we went through developing a plan. The key thing that Mostafa told us during that meeting was this is not… He said, “This is not a short-term enterprise. If you’re going to do this and if you’re going to be involved in construction management with construction management programs, you have to think of it as a long-term strategy and you have to be prepared to commit some resources over a long period of time to do it.” That was advice that was really good. We knew we were a little bit late to the party. We had to make up some ground to catch up with some of the other trades that had been doing this kind of stuff for a while. He told us again, “Start slowly. Build the program and then, once you get to a critical mass, good things will start to happen.” I think it’s fair to say that’s pretty much been our experience.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Yeah. We’ve seen so much come out of this over the last years. I mean, I can remember when Dennis Conway said that and said, “Hey, I’ve got an idea,” and all the things that went through that.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Allison, as the executive director of the Roofing Alliance, you’re seeing all of the highlights. I mean, there’s so many different parts of what’s going on with our Construction Management Initiative. Can you update everybody on what’s happening, 22, 23, what they should be looking for?

Allison LaValley:
Certainly. Thank you, Heidi, for having us. There’s so much going on within the Roofing Alliance Construction Management Initiative. First of all, you mentioned the student competition. Bill had talked about that eight or nine years ago. One of the things that was recommended to us was starting our own student competition, so, in 2023, we will be hosting our ninth competition during the International Roofing Expo. That’s on March 8th.

Allison LaValley:
Really, this hallmark event is really exciting this year. Being in the Dallas area, we’re going to be featuring a 268,000 square-foot retractable roof on Globe Life Field. It’ll be a challenge for the participating student teams, but one I think they’re going to really embrace. Last year, we were lucky enough to have six teams compete, and our goal this year is to have 10 teams apply for the competition. Basically, the teams research the project. They submit a qualified bid proposal and complete an oral presentation to illustrate their roofing project management, estimating and safety knowledge, and then, after receiving all the details, what’s really nice is we connect them with a roofing mentor within the alliance. A member pairs up with that school, truly talk to them about the project and about roofing basics and all sorts of roofing construction details and really guide them through that written proposal as well as their oral presentation, and then we’ve got Roofing Alliance members that judge that competition each year, so really an exciting venture, and that it’s our ninth one I think says a lot about the Roofing Alliance work.

Allison LaValley:
Some other things that are really exciting are our partnerships, two of them with Clemson University and Arizona State University, of course, with Dhaval and Tony here, which has just been great. Bill has been really instrumental, as he mentioned, with Dennis Conway in getting a lot of these relationships off the ground. We’re so thankful for his participation as well as Dhaval and Tony.

Allison LaValley:
With Clemson University, we’ve partnered to educate college students and young professionals about the roofing industry. What’s been so great about Clemson is, through this, we’ve been able to develop three classes as well as a roofing certificate program. The first phase of that program is complete. There’s a three-credit roofing-specific course at Clemson, which has been great. We have educated, I don’t know, Dhaval will go into the details I know, but 80 or 90-plus students. I mean, can you imagine? I know he’s got details to share about that, but people specifically choosing a roofing class as an elective, and now we have three of them.

Allison LaValley:
What’s great is that the alliance approved additional funding this year for a roofing manual that’s going to accompany those classes. At the end, we’re going to have three full classes, a roofing certificate program, whether it’s for the student or the professional, and there’ll be a manual developed. It’s just been outstanding not only the relationship with Dhaval and Clemson, but just seeing those students. He’ll share all the details about that coming up. I just can’t say enough. I could go on and on, but I won’t. I have to let Dhaval do that.

Heidi Ellsworth:
True.

Allison LaValley:
Yeah. I mean, like I said, I could just rant on and on. Then there’s the relationship with ASU and Tony, Dr. Lamanna. It’s a two-part thing, too. I look at it that way. Bill had a wonderful idea about… and some members about starting a faculty retreat, so the alliance held its inaugural faculty retreat on roofing last March for full-time faculty members interested in the role of roofing in construction management programs. We held that at Arizona State’s Del E. Webb School of Construction in Tempe. It included several workshops on roofing-specific things like best practices, roof designs, safety, technology, career opportunities, and then Tony and some of his staff led instruction that had engagement to instruct those students.

Allison LaValley:
It was really a true partnership. We had about 13 faculty participate, and we’re holding our second one this October back at ASU. We already have seven enrolled, and I expect we’ll probably have close to 15 this time. Again, what a wonderful opportunity because then we’re seeing those faculty members in schools put the Clemson curriculum in place at those schools. It’s one thing to have the curriculum, but we have to have the instructors able to teach it. That’s the beauty of that faculty retreat.

Allison LaValley:
Then the alliance approved a fellowship funding for a fellowship in conjunction not only with ASU, but a group of local roofing contractors in the Arizona area and the Arizona Roofing Industry Foundation, so talk about a partnership, not only boots on the ground with contractors, but the local affiliate and their foundation and then the Roofing Alliance and our members.

Allison LaValley:
I can’t say enough there. I know Tony will go into details about that, about the fellow. We’re hoping to conduct some innovative research aligned with roofing, sustainability, the building envelope, et cetera, through that fellow, so more to come there. That’s just getting off the ground. I know Tony will get into a little bit more detail about that. I’ve got to shut up now because, like I said, I’ll just keep going on because I’m so excited about all this stuff. Again, thanks for allowing us the opportunity and, again, to Bill and Tony and Dhaval. I can’t say enough about what this partnership is going to mean to the industry, so thank you.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Allison, you’re already seeing it, too. I mean, so many are excited. When I think about just on the student competition and all the students being on the show floor and all of the roofing professionals being able to meet them, being able to talk to the students, being involved and then how the classes and the fellowship all start winding all of that back together and the faculty retreat, I mean it’s just brilliant.

Allison LaValley:
Yeah. It’s amazing to see how it’s all come together, all these pieces, like Bill, said from that idea from eight or nine years ago and how it’s developed. It’s remarkable.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Yeah, it is. It is so cool.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Dhaval, so I had the honor of presenting to one of your classes last spring on marketing, and that was just a highlight of my year of 2022 for me so far. You have been really involved from the very beginning and you obviously proposed to the Roofing Alliance and brought roofing curriculum. Can you tell us a little bit of the history of that? Maybe introduce yourself a little bit, too, for those who might not know you and tell us where, what’s happening with all that.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Sure, Heidi. Thank you again for inviting me to RoofersCoffeeShop. I always enjoy talking to you and really getting the word out to the industry and what we are trying to do because, in my opinion, what we’re doing is very innovative not from a traditional innovation perspective, but really bringing curriculum into the university which has never been done before.

Dhaval Gajjar:
A little bit of background about me, my name is Dhaval, as Heidi and Allison mentioned. I work at Clemson University. I am a professor here for about… on my fifth year now. All this started really during my graduate school. My master’s thesis and my PhD dissertation was focused on roofing during my graduate school, and that’s what got me interested in roofing. Then I went and worked in the industry and, believe it or not, as an owner rep working for a movie theater, working as a general contractor, one of the most critical scopes work on any construction project was the building envelope, specifically roofing, so I got really educated on how critical roofing is to the entire built environment. This is the only element that I know that is exposed to environmental conditions that determines the overall health of a building.

Dhaval Gajjar:
When I decided to come to Clemson and transfer that knowledge to a future workforce, I was really amazed to find out that there’s not a whole lot that is being talked about roofing within the construction management curriculum. That’s when the Roofing Alliance and, in fact, Bill Good from the Roofing Alliance and myself and our chair, we met in Charleston over lunch about four years ago. We just had this crazy idea of, “Let’s develop roofing-specific curriculum,” and not knowing where this is going to go. We pitched that funding idea about four years ago to develop a roofing curriculum. I know the industry thought that with the timeline I put together that I was crazy. In one year, we had proposed not only to put together a roofing curriculum, but to actually offer it to our students.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Now, one year is a very quick timeline for academia to develop the curriculum, to build the curriculum and to offer the curriculum. We did that with the industry support. One of the phenomenal things about this whole partnership is the support of the roofing industry. I’m not just saying one or two companies. I mean, I’m talking of companies from all over the US coming together and helping us develop this course and in volunteering to come as guest speakers such as yourself, Heidi. You came last year and you loved it, and so thank you for doing that. Bill Good has been here multiple times, and so thank you, Bill Good. It’s just a phenomenal support from the industry, which is just overwhelming, and so that’s what truly made this effort as successful as it is today.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Then one of the big questions was why would students sign up for a roofing course? One of the caveat was would students sign up? We can do all the cool things. We can do industry surveys. We can put the curriculum together. We can put the class on the books, but are students going to register? We were blown away that we had opened up for 15 students and the class was full within four days of registration opening. Then we expanded it to around 22 students at that time. The students that came out of that class were so amazed at what the roofing industry is. They had such a good knowledge about the industry that we had a few of the students go ahead and get internships in the roofing industry which led to full-time jobs, so we’re making an impact in students lives.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Then we said, “Let’s not stop here. We have something really good here, so let’s go ahead and develop a full-blown ninth grade certificate program.” Like Allison mentioned, we are in our phase two right now. We have finished developing and offering our second course. We had 20 students again. We just finished our third course offering as of last semester, and we had 41 students signed up for that class. The students love this course. In fact, as we speak, our goal is, by the end of next week, we should have released course number three, fully developed, including the online videos and all the course modules. We have applied for the certificate program at the higher ed level, and that should be approved by the end of the year as well. The students coming into our program will not only walk from master’s degree and taking the roofing courses, but they’ll have a roofing certificate as they graduate from our program.

Dhaval Gajjar:
We’re developing a manual as we speak where, again, we will involve the industry in putting that body of knowledge together that will go hand in hand with the certificate program. We also have had other schools like Tony, Arizona State University. We had a few other universities who have taken this curriculum and have started offering it at their institutions. It’s a really cool thing to see that this is not only a Clemson program, but we are actually on our way to accomplishing the goal that we establish in the very beginning. This is not a Clemson program. This is a Roofing Alliance program, and we want to take this and educate all the workforce all over nationally at all other institutions, so very exciting what is happening here, Heidi.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Yeah, that is so exciting. Your class, what I saw, the students in the class were so engaged, and it was very real world, and so you felt like, okay, these young people are going to come out ready to go to be a part of the roofing industry and, even if they aren’t a part of the roofing industry, to at least understand roofing so, if they go to work for a general contractor or a big GC, they understand the roofing world, too, which is I think a huge benefit for what you’re doing.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Absolutely. In fact, we have had… Going to that point that, we have had quite a bit of general contractor companies come back and report that, when our interns go out, they have never seen such roofing knowledge among any of the other professionals that they have and, as soon as they come out and go work in the field, they’re responsible for the roofing scope of work. They actually know what that is, which in itself is a win-win for everyone.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Exactly. There’s just so many layers to all of this.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Tony, you really are bringing it all together because, like Allison said, we have the curriculum, you have the manual, but if people don’t know how to teach it or they don’t find the same passion that both of you have, it’s hard. This faculty retreat that you’re doing is amazing. Can you tell everybody about that?

Tony Lamanna:
Yeah. It’s an exciting event. We got our feet wet last spring offering it for the first time. I think we’re expanding it from the 10 seats that we had to 15 seats. We want to keep it small because this generates a cohort of faculty that have had this roofing background given to them as well as some teaching information. I was there the whole time. Even though I taught the teaching-oriented stuff about how to teach pieces, the classroom behavior, that kind of thing, but I was there for all the roofing stuff. I feel like I was an unofficial attendee. I definitely know a lot more about the roofing industry than I did before.

Tony Lamanna:
We had feedback after every session, so we are able to improve on what we did last year this coming October. I’m excited to offer this again. It was well-received by all of the faculty that attended. I know Bradley University offered one of Dhaval’s roofing classes this summer. Here at ASU at the Del E. Webb School of Construction, we’ll be offering the first roofing class in the spring, this coming spring, so January 2023. Actually, for us, that’ll be part of… We’re creating a graduate certificate in building commissioning, and so we’ve got two building commissioning classes, the roofing class, a building envelope management class, and a sustainable construction class. This will be the core. We’re looking to add those other two roofing classes once Dhaval gets the manual together, and we can run with that.

Tony Lamanna:
There is a need. We’ve actually had multiple industry partners locally, as Bill was talking. We have several local contractors who wanted to help with this. They come in, and they’ll be teaching at this teaching workshop. We’ve got other folks in the roofing industry flying in for the workshop, and then also on a related note is our roofing industry fellowship for someone who’s already teaching at a construction management program without a PhD so that they can get their PhD. They can do their coursework online at ASU. They’ll do their research in the roofing industry. Again, the great thing is with the help of the industry members and the Roofing Alliance, we actually will be able to do some research that actually matters. Instead of looking at little molecules and how things go together, but an NSF funded stuff, this is actually things that will help the industry, so I’m really excited. I’ve been in discussions with a handful of faculty around the country who are interested. I’m excited to get that moving as well to generate professors who are specialists in roofing.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Well, I love all that. I got so excited about this topic that I didn’t really have everybody introduce themselves. I got Dhaval, but, Tony, I would love to hear what everything you’re doing. Can you give us a little bit, maybe a little bit about yourself and about the ASU Construction Management Program just so that they have some context on what you’re doing?

Tony Lamanna:
Sure. I’m Tony Lamanna. I’m the programs chair for the Del E. Webb School of Construction here at Arizona State University. We’re in the college of engineering. It’s very confusing. There’s a lot of levels there. We’re the Del E. Webb School of Construction. We’re within the School of Sustainable Engineering and Built Environment, which is in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering, which is the college here at ASU. We’re here in Tempe campus. This August, starting this week, I think we will have broken the thousand-student barrier for our construction programs, pretty evenly split between the bachelor’s degree and the master’s degree and then a much smaller contingent of PhD students.

Tony Lamanna:
We have pretty good ties with our industry. I actually have to thank Bill for introducing me to the roofing industry locally. I work across all sectors, but I have to say I’m very impressed with what I’ve seen with the Roofing Alliance and the roofing industry. I work with multiple sectors within construction, and this is the only sector that is thinking this far ahead. I’m very excited and very happy that, if want to change construction education, you have to play the long game and, as Bill mentioned earlier, you’ve built this out to play the long game. This is going to work. It may take a while, but it’s going to work.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Yeah, and we’re already seeing that. I mean, it’s great because you get to see this as we go along, and I think it’s because of the combination of the student competition and the classes, which takes so much longer, but it has pulled it all together. I think both Tony and Dhaval have mentioned the introductions into the communities. I mean, you guys have some of the most awesome roofing contractors right there right around you.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Bill, you’ve been active with the ACCE, which I’m going to have you tell everybody what ACCE stands for, but also why the Roofing Alliance is involved and how that’s brought us back around to be working with such awesome people as Dhaval and Tony.

Bill Good:
Sure. Well, if you recall, back at the beginning, I talked about going to meet with Mostafa Khattab and getting his advice. He advised us to start a student competition. He advised us to get engaged with faculty, to get engaged with students through the student competition and other ways, but one of the ways to get engaged with faculty he said was for the organization to become a member of ACCE. Well, I didn’t know what ACCE was. I’d never heard of them. I don’t think anybody in the alliance had.

Bill Good:
ACCE is the American Council for Construction Education. Its mission is to promote quality education in construction. Its focus historically has been to accredit schools of construction management. Most schools of construction management, like most departments in most universities, seek accreditation from a third party to validate what they’re doing. ACCE is, in our opinion, the premier body in construction management that does that. The alliance’s involvement in the organization entitled us to have a seat on the board of trustees, which I’ve occupied now for a number of years. It’s also allowed me and others who have been through the ACCE process and gone to some meetings to really get to know some of these faculty members who are involved in teaching construction education. That relationship-building effort I think has been really valuable.

Bill Good:
ACCE has a couple of conferences a year, and the attendees are a combination of construction management faculty and representatives from industry and, primarily, I think it’s fair to say, representatives from academia, from construction management schools. What ACCE does is develop the standards for accreditation. They train people to become accreditors or visit the schools to go through the criteria that are established for accreditation and all of that sort of thing. It’s a very rigorous process, as you would imagine. These schools get accredited typically for six years and then they have to be re-accredited.

Bill Good:
Within the last couple of years, ACCE looked back at its mission statement which says to promote quality education in construction. It doesn’t say anything about at the college level or at the post-secondary level. I volunteered to chair a committee that has undertaken the idea of looking at accrediting what we call construction workforce education programs, so think about apprenticeship programs or individual company training programs, anything that has to do with promoting construction education in the industry that could benefit from accreditation. We now have developed standards and criteria for that. We have successfully accredited our first program, which is a complicated one. It involves five different trades in 10 different locations in Colorado. We have others now that are in a queue waiting for us to get all of our ducks in a row so that we can expand and broaden that accreditation process for these kinds of programs.

Bill Good:
For the Roofing Alliance, this could become a really interesting benefit because, think about local apprenticeship programs, they can be union, they can be open shop, it doesn’t matter, we’ve been focused on those that are registered by the Department of Labor, but we can also move beyond that. Think about construction education programs that take place at community colleges or voc-tech schools. Some of those could become accredited.

Bill Good:
One of the outcomes that we see on the horizon here is that a student who is going through these apprenticeship programs or other kinds of training programs could conceivably get to a point where they could earn college credits for doing it or, in fact, earn an associate degree when they graduate from one of these programs. We think there’s a pretty incredible benefit potentially here for not just the roofing industry, but all the construction industry. If you think about it, the outcome now could be for us to be able to go into high school and say a student could go to college. That’s certainly an option. It’s not for everybody as we know, but if the same student wants to go into an apprenticeship program, they will be earning money from day one. They’ll learn a trade after three or four years and become a journeyman or whatever the name might be and, conceivably, they’ll be on their way to having an associate degree without having to pay any tuition. That becomes a pretty compelling story to tell high school guidance counselor. It’s a lot different story from what we have historically been telling them.

Bill Good:
That’s what’s going on at ACCE. It’s a really interesting and exciting time. I would say also that the Roofing Alliance has been really smart in staying engaged there because it’s led to a lot of different relationships that have developed, including the ones with Clemson and ASU, but also including some others that have led to research projects that have been funded by the alliance. Again, it’s part of that long-term strategy, but it’s a place I think where, as an industry and as an alliance, we need to be.

Tony Lamanna:
Can I continue what Bill said about that?

Heidi Ellsworth:
Yes. Yes, please.

Tony Lamanna:
I’m also very involved with ACCE. I think all of this growth in the different programs that ACCE is looking after is incredible, but I think one of the common themes here, too, is we’re not going to have enough instructors. We’re growing the number of programs. We’re growing the enrollment. We’re going to hit a thousand here at ASU in the School of Construction this week. Five years ago, we were half that. Having enough instructors is going to be a critical point, and so actually one of the things we’re doing at ACCE is we’re creating a teaching and learning practitioner, TLP certification. Hopefully, we’ll have this up and running, and then the teaching parts of the Roofing Alliance workshop will gain credit towards that teaching credential.

Tony Lamanna:
I also wanted to speak directly to the Roofing Alliance members and your listeners. Reach out to those community colleges. Reach out to the colleges. Reach out to the high schools and offer your services to come teach. The pinch point for me right now is getting enough instructors. At the college level, they prefer you have a master’s degree. We can fit you in the classroom with a bachelor’s plus some certification. I think, ultimately, this TLP teaching certification will count, but lead CPC certified constructor, these types of things will help with that.

Tony Lamanna:
Don’t be afraid to reach out to your local programs at no matter what level, whether it’s trade, community college, college, and offer your services. You’ll be surprised how willing they’ll be to work with you. It may take you a while to find the right person. Usually, you start with the chairman, but reach out. We need all the help we can get, and this is a great way especially if you want to teach something in roofing. You can reach out to Allison, and she will put you in touch with Dhaval, and you can get the Roofing Alliance courses and coursework so a lot of the legwork is done for you.

Heidi Ellsworth:
You know what? I was going to ask that, Tony, thank you, because that is so critical in what’s happening there. We are aging out. We have a lot of people who maybe are done with their career roofing or they’re looking for other things to do. It’s the perfect time. There’s so much knowledge and wisdom out there within the roofing industry, so for them to be able to reach out.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Dhaval, you’re nodding your head. No one can see that, but you’re finding the same thing in your area, right?

Dhaval Gajjar:
No. We are. Like Tony mentioned, one of the most effective and the powerful ways that he can make a difference for the workforce is to get involved. Every university or community college has some type of an industry advisory board where they’re looking for industry partners to come in and help develop their curriculum. What a cool position to be in if you’re a roofing contractor or manufacturer or distributor that you get to have an input in some of the curriculum, and that’s where you can inject some of the roofing-specific curriculum. There’s a lot of cool opportunities where the professionals can get involved.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Like Tony mentioned, now we have a process of how to do that so it’s not to cumbersome on the professional itself. The Roofing Alliance and Clemson and ASU have done most of the work where we can. You just have to show an interest, and we’ll do all the legwork for you, so please reach out, anyone who wants to get involved in anything that we’re doing. I think that’s a big message that we want to send out is please get involved and help us build the future workforce.

Bill Good:
As a matter of fact, if I can add one more thing here, one of the criteria for being accredited, for these construction management programs to be accredited is that they have to have an industry advisory board and it has to be effective. It has to actually do stuff. These industry advisory boards are composed typically of contractors in the area who have the opportunity to develop curriculum. They have the opportunity to teach classes. They have the opportunity to look at the effectiveness of the recruiting programs and of the outplacement programs at these schools, and they get FaceTime with all of those folks. They get FaceTime with the students that they might want to hire, and they get FaceTime with the faculty members. It’s an easy way to get involved, and it can be a very, very effective strategy for getting involved.

Heidi Ellsworth:
So many different ways to get involved. Allison, I mean talk to that a little bit.

Allison LaValley:
Yeah. I was going to, Heidi. You mentioned earlier that you’re involved with the CTE committee on NRCA, which I used to oversee when I was wearing my NRCA hat more, but I’ll tell you, with the CTE schools, first of all as a resource, what Tony and Dhaval and Bill said, “Reach out.” Please do. I can’t encourage contractors enough. NRCA actually provides a resource where all the major CTE schools are listed on NRCA’s website under its workforce development area with contact names and contact information.

Allison LaValley:
Another NRCA president, a long-time Roofing Alliance member, reached out, it was maybe two years ago, and thought, “I’m just going to reach out and see what happens.” They called on a Monday and said, “We’re interested and we’re partnering. We can come out and teach roofing,” and they actually said to him on that initial phone call, “Could you come this Thursday?” I mean there wasn’t a discussion to be had. “This Thursday?” He was like, “That’s three days away,” and they were like, “Yes. Well, we’d love for you to come this Thursday,” and he was a little shell-shocked. I’m not sure if they made it work and made amends for a next week.

Allison LaValley:
They’re waiting for us. They’re there. They’re interested, and that’s just on the CTE side. I think there’s so much opportunity there, things that Bill spoke to about, everything that’s going on at that level and the possibilities there for people that maybe just aren’t going to be at a university level. There’s so much at the CTE level. Again, NRCA has a lot of resources for that. The alliance is also involved in that. We provide scholarships for CTE diversity and other accredited colleges. We’ve got a whole scholarship program to help with that, but, yeah, like our message, get involved. Make that initial phone call. Just pick up the phone and call and reach out. There’s an incredible amount of opportunity. I know Dhaval has seen that just with all the contractors that have come to speak to his class. Those students love that. They want the interaction with industry, so I can’t say enough about that.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Yeah. Oh, I love it. Just to bring that home, let’s just talk just a little bit about, Allison, things that people should be watching. We have the faculty retreat. If you know of some folks in construction management, if maybe someone listening is working with their local college and they’re like, “I want to get our teachers involved,” this is a great way to reach out to find out because you’ll be doing this all the time, and then we got to talk just a little bit about the student competition to make sure everybody has that on their calendars.

Allison LaValley:
Yeah. Again, the faculty retreat this October, we’ll be holding at ASU. We have contact with all the faculty. ACCE is promoting that, if anybody out there is already connected to their local universities. It’s paid for by the Roofing Alliance. There’s a simple application, a letter of recommendation that has to come, and then NRCA and the Roofing Alliance funds that, and so what a wonderful opportunity going four days with a lot of interaction, a lot of context to be made and so much value there. Again, that’s this October, and then, as you said, the student competition, that’ll be held March 8th in Dallas at the International Roofing Expo. Information is available at the Roofing Alliance website, and we will be launching things. Because of our relationship with ACCE, we have access to all the schools. We’ll be sending our packet of information with all the details for the competition this year to instructors by the end of August, and applications are due this fall, and then the judging will begin.

Allison LaValley:
We can recommend teams getting involved. The teams consist of five students with a sixth alternate student. Again, those that are selected to come to present their oral presentation, again, those expenses are covered by the Roofing Alliance for the faculty person such as Dhaval who has come for a number of years with his team, and that’s covered by the Roofing Alliance. They get an opportunity to get out of school for a little while, interact with faculty. We bring them on to the trade show floor. They get to interact with the manufacturers and distributors on the trade show floor, talk with contractors, learn from the judges’ critique, because we have students then that return the following year, and experience the city and do some fun activities and really just get to know a lot about roofing.

Allison LaValley:
For those that win, we honor our first place and second place. There’s scholarship funding that goes back to the school. There’s prizes awarded to the students, and then they’re all recognized at our award ceremony on stage in front of about a few thousand people. It’s really an exciting time. I know Dhaval could probably speak to it a little bit more, too, being as a participant and faculty for that and seeing what it brings to a student.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Allison, and I’m going to piggy off of that more from the student perspective, we have had multiple, we have been participating for the last four years in this competition. One of the most common comment we get from the students is, “This is one of the best things we did in our entire four-year program.” The reason why is just the way the package works is they have to put together an actual roofing company, they have to bid on a project, and they have to go and present their proposal selected, so they get their real-life experience of what they would actually go through in the industry. The roofing competition at least in our Clemson program has become one of the most popular programs where we have 20 students applying, but, unfortunately, we can only accept five or six.

Dhaval Gajjar:
If there’s one thing that I think you can get away with, either a faculty or industry member, is get involved in student competitions. As an industry member, I know, Allison, that you can be a mentor because every team gets a mentor, so that’s one of the other ways some of the industry professionals can participate and just by providing help to some of these students. Again, I can speak highly of the certain competition. I think it’s one of the best. One of the highlights of the entire program that we have at Clemson is the roofing student competition.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Wow. That is so cool. I really want to encourage again, just like we said, if you are already involved with your local university or construction management program, be sure to talk about these things. Talk about the roofing courses, the fellowship opportunity that we have right now that’s new this year which will continue to grow, and getting the students involved in the student competition because it really is… I mean, it’s the best thing at the IRE. Let’s just say that. I hope everybody will be able to attend, that everybody will be able to come and watch these students. You will be blown away. RoofersCoffeeShop is lucky enough to be able to interview all of them after the competition, too. It’s very fun. Thank you all. Thank you for being here on this podcast. Thank you for your wisdom and also for everything you’re giving back to the roofing industry. It’s just amazing.

Allison LaValley:
Thank you for having us, Heidi.

Dhaval Gajjar:
Thank you. Thank you for having us.

Bill Good:
Thank you for having us.

Heidi Ellsworth:
Thank you, and thank you all for listening. You can find all this information on the Roofing Alliance website, roofingalliance.net, or you can also find all of this on RoofersCoffeeShop in the Roofing Alliance directory. We also have tons of CTE information in the NCRA directory and articles and podcasts and all types of information so that you can get involved. Thank you so much for listening today. Be sure to listen to all of our podcasts under the Read Listen Watch navigation on rooferscoffeeshop.com. Look for those Roofing Road Trips, and also be sure to subscribe on your favorite podcast channel and hit that notification so you don’t miss a single episode. We’ll see you next time on Roofing Road Trips.

Speaker 1:
Make sure to subscribe to our channel and leave a review. Thanks for listening. This has been Roofing Road Trips with Heidi from the rooferscoffeeshop.com.





Source link

portland roofing contractors
Call Now Button