The Department of Construction Science at Texas A&M, in collaboration with SpawGlass, provided a Construction Management Academy to HCISD high school students from June 20-24.
Led by Dr. Edelmiro Escamilla, Assistant Instructional Professor at Texas A&M, the workshops covered topics such as introduction to construction, safety, and law, among other sessions.
“In these workshops, we take them from plan drawings on paper to seeing it in 3-D,” Dr. Escamilla said. “We hope they make a connection that there is more to construction science than what they initially thought. Last year we provided these classes and now I have students telling me they will see me in the Fall in College Station. Our goal is to get them moving ahead, even if they do not go to A&M, as long as they are trying to improve their lives and education, we are doing really good.”
A group of about 21 students met at Harlingen High School South where they had the opportunity to learn through a fun curriculum that included activities such as an airplane game and spaghetti skyscrapers. Through these activities, they also learned important life lessons.
“In construction science, you are not the builder or the engineer behind it, but you are the one who breaks everything up among people,” Harlingen High School South senior Brandon Bennett said. “You have to really learn how to work with people. We are learning that it takes a lot of leadership skills to be a construction manager.”
The cohort also got to visit SpawGlass construction sites where they had the opportunity to interact with construction managers and workers.
“I decided to join this camp because this is the field that I want to go into,” Harlingen High School senior Jacqueline Medina said. “My dad used to be a construction manager and I used to go to sites with him. I liked it a lot. Before, I saw it from my dad’s perspective but now I am seeing it differently because this workshop is very hands on. We are actually looking at the plans on iPads like they do on the sites.”
The weeklong workshop concluded with a tour of Texas A&M College Station and a visit to the Department of Construction Science.