Just over 60 days ago, Joe French, owner of Louisville Handyman & Remodeling, took a chance on hiring Brandon Summitt, a Spencer County Area Technology Center graduate. This chance, coupled with Joe’s desire to grow our industry’s next generation of skilled workers, has resulted in an outstanding new hire for Louisville Handyman and a life long career opportunity for Brandon.
Brandon was referred to Joe by Brandi Scott, Spencer County High School’s College and Career Coach. Brandi had kept in touch with Brandon through his first job at another local area contractor. However, while Brandon faithfully showed up and worked hard throughout that first placement, he was not in a position to learn the carpentry skills he was looking for. With that in mind, Brandon knew that Louisville Handyman was the perfect ‘home’ for him.
Since Brandon started, he has been able to help on numerous jobs for Louisville Handyman—and learn new skills such as drywall, demolition, trim work and the use of power tools—to name a few. He shows up, works hard and demonstrates a true desire to learn. “If Brandon continues on this path, he’ll one day have his own truck and run jobs for us,” said Joe. “He’s a true success story, and while I know we have a ways to go, he is proof that our collective efforts to develop the next generation are working.”
We recently had the opportunity to meet Brandon while he helped on a project hanging and finishing drywall at the BIA. Thus far, he’s thrilled with his opportunity with Louisville Handyman, explaining to us, “The guys here teach me a lot. They are always willing to show me new skills, which is exactly what I’ve been looking for.”
While our industry must continue our work encouraging young people that construction is a viable—and profitable!—career path, students like Brandon remind us to be proud of what we’re accomplishing. With that in mind, the BIA is grateful for the hard work of our partners in Spencer, Oldham, Bullitt and Shelby counties and within the Academies of Louisville program at JCPS, and will continue doing our part to help grow our construction workforce pipeline!
By Martha Bracken, BIA Staff