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MCA Ontario Reaches Out To Students PDF Print E-mail

The Mechanical Contractors Association of Ontario (MCAO) has taken a pro-active – and innovative – approach to attract young people into the management side of the mechanical contracting business by establishing student chapters in three cities. What makes it innovative is that the focus is on recruiting for the business management side of the industry, and not just for skilled workers. 

Steve Colemen, executive vice president of MCAO, said that the industry has traditionally focused its attention on promoting careers in the skilled trades. However, there is a realization that time and effort need to be invested to recruit college and university graduates into the positions of estimators and project managers. 

“A lot of students don’t really know what they want to do,” said Coleman. “The idea is to kind of get in their face and say, ‘Hey, we’re a huge industry. You can have a fantastic career’.” 

Student chapters have been established in Hamilton and Ottawa. Toronto will have its chapter established soon. Brian McCabe, executive vice president of MCA Toronto, said that “Companies are always looking for young graduates to work initially as assistants to the project managers or in the estimating department or on the administrative side and then move up the ranks. Finding them has always been a problem.” 

The student chapters were established after recommendations by recently-hired graduates at local contracting firms. Student chapters have been active in the United States for some time, and have been very successful. 

“Once we get some mileage behind us in Ontario, I can see these chapters being set up in other corners of the country,” Coleman said.


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