Green Bay high school seniors build a house

Published: Mar. 26, 2019 at 6:44 PM CDT
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The building and trades industry is seeing a critical shortage of skilled workers.

A study done by

projects the skills gap could leave 2.4 million positions vacant over the next ten years.

Fernando Nunez is one of eight Green Bay high school seniors who built this house from the ground up.

“There's a really small hallway right here, we got bedroom one and two and then you got the bathroom,” said Nunez as he shows off the upstairs of the home. He's a senior at Preble High School.

Just like a job, students applied to be in the

and the end product is a NeighborWorks Green Bay home for someone to live in.

“We couldn't imagine it,” said Nunez. “With all the wiring and the plumbing that got put in, we just came to the realization that this is actually where someone is going to spend a good chunk of their life in and it's because of us.”

This is the third home built by high school students through the bridges program. It’s also working to address a need in the trades industry.

“There just aren't a lot of young people willing to get into it, so to have a group of guys like this that are getting the experience, hopefully that will inspire some more students to come out and do this with us to get young people into the trades,” said Brian Frerk, the program instructor with the school district.

“What we've learned the most is just pure creativity, we're allowed to test out new things and we're able to show our skills, how to work as a team,”

The class also got tool belts and a brand new trailer, donated by sponsors and NWTC to store their tools.

“Our students are able to keep all their equipment hard hats and boots and stuff here so when they come from school, they can change over into carpenters and go to work here,” said Frerk.

The students are also earning college credit in construction through the program.