The Gallegos Corporation recently instituted an Apprenticeship Program for Concrete and Masonry trades. The Gallegos Corporation began their apprentice program to ensure they can meet future staffing needs with skilled tradesmen. The programs also address a need in the local areas in which they serve for skilled labor training for recent high school graduates. Gary Woodworth, CEO of Gallegos said, “As we discussed adding the apprenticeship programs, it became evident that this would help Eagle County residents, as well as be a benefit to our employees and company. TGC has always been active with the youth in our communities and this builds on where most of our other efforts have ended, which is high school graduation.” The need for skilled tradesmen is not exclusive to our local area according to recent construction industry studies; it is predicted that there will be a shortage of skilled tradesmen that exceeds 2,000,000 employees nationwide by the end of next year. Over the upcoming years, TGC will be adding additional trades in all of their regions.

The Concrete Apprenticeship Program was developed through cooperation with the Department of Labor and National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER). TGC became an Accredited Training Sponsor and the program is taught in-house. Six Gallegos employees are Certified Instructors of the program and three are Certified Master Trainers. TGC teaches the CORE Curriculum, which includes OSHA-10, basic hand tools and power tools, construction math, plan reading and materials handling during the first semester. The classes began September 5th with 14 concrete apprentices in the Vail area.

The Masonry Apprenticeship Program is administered through The Rocky Mountain Masonry Institute (RMMI) and Construction Institute Training Council (CITC) in Denver.  The RMMI program operates as a stand-alone apprentice training. TGC was part of the committee that established the Masonry apprentice program with Scott Christensen, Division President for their Denver office, serving on the Program Direction Committee. Three TGC employees are enrolled with apprentices from nine other contractors.

Beyond addressing the expected labor shortages, creating an apprenticeship program is a benefit to their employees.  After only a few classes, the apprentices are already seeing a benefit. A current employee, who has been in construction for 16 years, said “I have learned more about different aspects of the concrete trade.  I worked primarily as an iron worker, but have appreciated learning about finishing and form setting.  I have been able to apply information from the courses to my current jobsites.” The apprentice program also provides an opportunity for recent graduates to earn income while learning a trade without attending college and provides an opportunity for a career in construction. It also benefits the Instructors and Master Trainers; who are able to share their knowledge and experience in a venue other than jobsites.

These classes are off to a great start. The initial success is due to current Gallegos employees who have taken initiative to teach the classes and provide strong leadership for the apprentices, as well as determined hardworking apprentices that joined the program.

TGC is headquartered in Vail, Colorado and has regional offices in Aspen and Denver; and travels across the United States working on high end residential and commercial projects. The Gallegos Corporation is actively involved in the communities it works in through charitable contributions and volunteer work.

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