grouppictureBy Tracy Bennett, Guest Contributor Adaptive Construction Solutions (ACS) of Houston, Texas, was recently approved by the Steel Erectors Association of America (SEAA) as an SEAA/NCCER Ironworker Training Unit and Assessment Site. The company, which opened its doors in April and became a member of SEAA soon after, completed its first two training classes over the summer, providing 36 veterans with NCCER Level 1 Ironworker training. ACS hires military veterans, trains them to become ironworkers and contracts them out to local general contractor and steel erection contractor partners in the Gulf Coast region. ACS was founded by Nick Morgan, a commercial insurance agent, U.S. Army staff sergeant and veteran of the Iraq War. “We are veterans, taking care of veterans for the purpose of retraining military personnel and supplying much needed qualified workers into the construction industry,” said Brittany Burton, marketing director for ACS. Initial training consists of an intensive 96-hour program with classroom and hands-on training over a 12-day period. This includes use of a training tower, which provides a real-world environment for lifting and placing steel, learning fall protection and prevention techniques, bolting, welding and other tasks. Upon completion of the initial training period veterans immediately enter the workforce with enough skills to be a productive apprentice member of their ironworking crew. Empire Steel, Postel International and Steelco are among the companies in the greater Houston area that have already hired ACS ironworkers for projects. “ACS’s mission aligns with SEAA’s, which is focused on recruiting new individuals into the ironworking trade and providing them with training to become skilled and qualified for the job,” said Tim Eldridge, craft training and assessment coordinator for SEAA and president of Education Services Unlimited. Experts estimate that in the Gulf Coast region, thousands of ironworkers will be needed in the coming decade to fill open positions and meet construction demand. Choosing to hire veterans in order to provide them with the necessary training, ACS sub-contracts its ironworkers to area steel erectors. Morgan took this unique approach because he believes one of the most important factors in re-integrating military personnel to civilian life is a steady paycheck. “Transitioning veterans thrive in team-oriented environments built on trust and empathy,” said Morgan.

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About NCCER

NCCER develops standardized construction and maintenance curricula and assessments with portable credentials. These credentials are tracked through NCCER’s National Registry which allows organizations and companies to track the qualifications of their craft professionals and/or check the qualifications of possible new hires. The National Registry also assists craft professionals by maintaining their records in a secure database.