Alachua, Fla. –  On February 12, at the first ever Veterans' Employment in Construction Symposium, First Lady Michelle Obama and U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas  E. Perez announced that a coalition of construction employers and associations have collectively pledged to hire more than 100,000 veterans over the next five years.

The symposium, held in Washington, D.C., was hosted by the U.S. Department of Labor and Joining Forces. NCCER and the Build Your Future (BYF) initiative were proud to have members of their military task force, who represent military, construction companies, industry leaders and associations, join them for this pioneering event.

“We are proud to be a part of this unprecedented commitment by the construction industry,” said Don Whyte, president of NCCER. “Creating an avenue to connect our returning military with the rewarding careers available through construction is a top priority for NCCER and BYF.”

Construction is one of the fastest growing industries in the nation and is a strong fit for the men and women transitioning from the military to civilian life. The field experience, values, and leadership skills learned while protecting America translates well into a career as a craft professional and opens doors to executive positions in the construction industry.

“Many of these veterans have technical skills that are directly relevant to the construction industry.  And plenty of veterans who don’t have those skills are eager to learn them. And with the right training, we know they have the discipline, we know they have the determination that is necessary to succeed in all kinds of construction jobs,” stated The First Lady.

NCCER and BYF are committed to help returning military make a smooth transition and enable them to continue to serve the country they love by building America. As a part of that commitment, NCCER and BYF are working with a task force of contractors, owners and other stakeholders to develop a program of assessing, training and transitioning veterans into high-skill, high-wage careers in construction.

Visit byf.org/military for more information and resources designed to connect returning military and the construction employers looking to hire them.