Skanska USA Building Inc. was proud to partner with Miami Job Corps and the City of Miami Gardens for the Showcase Job Fair held on July 25. This event highlighted the skilled and talented graduates of the Miami Job Corps with the goal of matching them with viable employment opportunities on the new City of Miami Gardens Municipal Complex Project. This state-of-the-art, LEED Platinum project is a great opportunity to make an economic impact in the community through job creation. Skanska is committed to optimizing employment opportunities in partnership with Miami Jobs Corps and the City of Miami Gardens. By helping to identify and facilitate contracting and employment opportunities for local residents/businesses, Skanska is doing their part in helping to stimulate the local economy.
Since Skanska does not self perform the majority of work, job opportunities are primarily driven by trade subcontractors. The event was meant to facilitate and connect trade subcontractors with viable, skilled labor for the community. Eleven subcontractors participated as “exhibitors” in the event. Trades represented included plumbing, electrical, structural steel, drywall, painting, carpentry, and concrete.
Over 40 job corps trainees participated, including 20-year-old Alatra Jones, who decided to join Miami Job Corps program because she was on a destructive path. Alatra was raised by her mother and grandmother in Overtown along with her younger sister and brother. At the age of 16, Alatra was diagnosed with cancer of the tongue and it moved to her throat. Upon overcoming that situation, she experienced a short period of being homeless and living on the streets. Despite these challenges, Alatra had all the internal tools within herself to be successful. She was a smart student at Booker T. Washington High; however, her time in the hospital fighting cancer caused her to fall behind in school leaving her unable to catch up in her studies. Alatra dropped out of high school despite having all the credits needed graduate. Alatra states one of the smartest decisions made she could make was enrolling into the Miami Job Corps program. Upon entering the program she has become a positive, mature, focus, and dedicated person. Within three months, she completed the requirements to earn a high school diploma through the Dade County Public School System. She is currently studying Painting. Her ultimate goal is to enlist into the Air Force.
Alatra states her greatest strength is “the fear of failing”. Upon completing the Job Corps program and the City Hall project, she wants to move to Pittsburgh, PA to continue learning new experiences and take advantage of all life has to offer.
Some of those in attendance at the job fair included Mayor Oliver Gilbert, Vice- Mayor Lisa Davis, Councilwoman Felicia Robinson; Miami Job Corps Director Willie Brown; Skanska USA’s Russ Sheppard and Nicole Heran; and Skanska partners Foster Construction, Garth Solutions Inc., and IMR Development. “The event was a wonderful example of what can happen when the City of Miami Gardens does business with companies that understand the importance of utilizing local human resources whenever possible states Gilbert.” The Construction of Miami Gardens’ Municipal Complex will have an extraordinary economic impact on the City Miami Gardens commercial portrait and it is great that Miami Gardeners will benefit.”