AEM's Construction Challenge program for teens that focuses on workforce development in the construction industry was recently named to the "Associations Advance America" 2009 honor roll. This is a nation awards competition presented by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and the Center for Association Leadership, Washington, D.C. Partnering with Destination ImagiNation, AEM puts on the Construction Challenge which is a program made up of creative problem solving designed to engage teens through a hands-on, educational experience. The overriding intent offers an opportunity for students, teachers, parents and community leaders to learn more about the rewarding careers available in the construction industry. As this industry is facing a severe workforce shortage in the near future, programs such as this are extremely important and it's good to see the hard work of those who put this program on and have participated in it being recognized. I had an opportunity to see the first ever finals at CONEXPO-CON/AGG & IFPE 2008 and from my vantage it did seem the participants were taking away great value from being part of the Construction Challenge. The 2009 AEM Construction Challenge will hold its finals competition May 20-23, 2009 during the Destination ImagiNation Global Finals in Knoxville, Tennessee. More than 50 student teams from across the U.S. and Toronto, Canada will participate after earning top honors in Challenge regional competitions held in early February. More than 2,000 high school and middle school students comprising 300-plus student teams participated in the regional competitions, held simultaneously in 15 cities.
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