Editor’s Note: On April 17, over 2,700 high school students from 19 area counties were in Springfield to test drive careers in construction. Build My Future at the Ozark Empire Fairgrounds had 76 hands-on exhibits, and provided an opportunity for industry professionals to come face-to-face with the future workforce.
And more students are getting plugged in. Since the inaugural event in 2017, there was a 200% increase in registered participants, says Springfield Contractors Association Executive Director Megan Short.
The event was built from scratch by a partnership with SCA, the Missouri Job Center, Home Builders Association of Greater Springfield, industry associations and organizations driving economic development, like the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce. The local event has since been replicated in other states.
Construction in the Ozarks is strong, and events like Build My Future are helping ensure it remains strong.
In this report, we’re highlighting 17 projects representing $158.2 million and over 960,000 square feet of new construction.
—Christine Temple, Features Editor
Read the profiles of this year's honorees.