Let’s Build Construction Camp for Girls is a free week-long camp designed for high school age girls to explore the construction trades, architecture, engineering, and construction materials manufacturing through hands-on experiences and field trips. The third annual camp was held the week of July 8 at the Bethlehem Area Vocational Technical School in Bethlehem, Pa.
This year, Kevin Klersy and Mike Plocinik of ATAS’ Technical Services Department spent an afternoon with the campers, demonstrating and assisting in the installation of Opaline metal wall panels and trims. Last year, the campers learned about the installation of Dutch Seam and Advanta Shingle metal roofing, and at the inaugural event, they toured ATAS’ headquarters and main production facility in Allentown, PA.
Lee Ann M. Slattery, Sales Support Manager for ATAS, who was involved in the planning of the camp, stated, “ATAS was pleased to be involved in the camp again this year. We are a strong supporter of the development and training of students within the local community, and this is the perfect opportunity to allow the campers exploration of potential careers in the architecture, engineering, construction, and manufacturing industries.”
The Let’s Build camp was created in 2017, the result of a collaborative effort between the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter, the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) Eastern PA Chapter, and the Architecture, Construction, and Engineering (ACE) Mentor Lehigh Valley Affiliate. The objectives of this camp include:
- Provide girls an opportunity to explore a career in the construction industry.
- Experience the construction trades through hands-on learning and building.
- Learn about architecture, engineering, and manufacturing during construction-related field trips to area businesses.
- Develop greater self-esteem by teaching skills to solve challenging projects and successfully complete them.
- Provide inspiration and mentoring for girls to understand they have a place in the construction industry, and they can become successful leaders in the future.
- Develop a stronger workforce for the future of the construction industry.
Jon Lattin, President of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chapter of CSI, and Kristen Fallon, Regional Vice President of Member Services of Eastern PA ABC, have led the creation and collaborative organizational efforts for this annual camp. Each year, the event has attracted more sponsors, volunteers, and campers. The camp is structured in such a way that the girls get to experience many different trades, visit area offices of architects, engineers, and contractors, and tour manufacturing facilities that make building products. This gives the campers a well-rounded view of the industry, and the many different careers that are included within it.