Thousands of students expected at inaugural Skilled Trades Expo

All students in attendance at the inaugural Mahoning Valley Skilled Trades Expo will get the opportunity to learn about and experience the skills needed for each craft, while learning about various career paths. (Photo credit: MVSkilledTrades.com)

On Sept. 26, students from the Mahoning Valley and Western Pennsylvania will get a first-hand look at how their future could be shaped by the skilled trades.

The inaugural Mahoning Valley Skilled Trades Expo will take place at the Canfield Fairgrounds and highlight the multitude of careers available in the construction trades.

“The overall goal is to give young men and women an idea of what the building trades have to offer as a potential career path,” said Jim Burgham, business manager, IBEW Local 64.

The event is being put on through a partnership between the Youngstown/Warren Regional Chamber, Builders Association of Eastern Ohio and Western Pennsylvania, Western Reserve Building Trades, along with the Mahoning, Columbiana and Trumbull County Educational Service Centers.

“There are opportunities in this area outside of college where people can make a good living,” Burgham said. “This expo gives students another option to look at when they’re trying to decide what they want to do with their future.”

All students in attendance will get the opportunity to learn about and experience the skills needed for each craft, while learning about various career paths.

“There will be everything from hands-on exhibits to reading materials students about each craft,” Burgham said. “We’re doing whatever we can to give them a flavor of what a career in the building trades would be like.”

Looking at the wide array of building trades, Burgham highlighted the benefits of an electrician apprenticeship.

“You earn while you learn,” he said. “Apprentices work during the day and go to school two or three nights a week. They come out of it with absolutely no debt, and they make a good living during their apprenticeship.”

Burgham also touched on the variety of opportunities available to those who choose a career in the electrical trade.

“After topping out as a journeyman electrician, you can move on to be a contractor, superintendent or electrical inspector,” he said. “We’ve also had people go back to school and get their degree in engineering.”

To learn more, visit MVSkilledTrades.com.

NECA-IBEW Electricians is an association of IBEW Local 64 (Youngstown), IBEW Local 573 (Warren) and signatory electrical contractors in the Mahoning Valley.

For information on the electrician apprentice program, visit ATradeThatPays.com