In December of 2013, NCCER surveyed education and construction industry representatives to gain a sense of what each group needs and expects of the other in order to establish the framework required for successful collaboration.
A random sampling of construction industry representatives account for the contractor’s survey responses. CTE educators and administrators from the ACTE’s agriculture, architecture and construction divisions comprise the educator’s responses. The ten open-ended survey questions addressed four main areas of interest; CTE funding, industry-recognized credentials, necessity for collaboration and the availability of career opportunities.
Data was assessed by identifying the recurrence of specific, key terms, which were then categorized and tabulated by overarching topics. Response analysis indicates a strong degree of positive correlation between the expectations of education and industry. The following is a breakdown of the themes repeated throughout the responses of both surveys:
Education Survey Themes:
- The viability of career opportunities and competitive wages in the construction industry must be promoted.
- Education needs industry’s active participation in CTE advisory committees to direct curricula.
- Industry internships and apprenticeship opportunities are needed in order for students to have valuable, real-world experience.
- Career and technical student organizations need industry support to provide a means for students to connect with industry in meaningful ways outside the classroom.
- Entry-level industry opportunities are needed for high school CTE graduates.
Industry Survey Themes:
- Education should engage in industry’s marketing strategies aimed at convincing students to choose careers in construction.
- Education has to provide industry with opportunities to actively participate in CTE advisory boards, which makes sure education and industry fulfill each other’s needs.
- Industry needs to convince legislators of the importance and impact of Perkins funding.
- Education should take advantage of the internships and apprenticeships opportunities that industry has to offer to better prepare students for immediate entry into the workforce.
- Education should enable students to obtain credentials in secondary programs to meet industry standards.
Survey responses from industry and education highlight common areas of interest. Using the survey responses, NCCER compiled guidance documents that establish the framework for collaboration between industry and education, which can be found in the next section of this binder. The questions asked in the survey can be found in the appendix of this binder.