Forging Leaders of Tomorrow: Young Construction Leaders

How the CCA's Young Construction Leaders Committtee is helping young people in the industry overcome challenges and discover opportunities.

The Young Construction Leaders Committee (YCLC), formed by the Calgary Construction Association (CCA) to foster leadership and provide a voice for young up-and-comers in the city’s con-struction industry, has certainly been busy since its birth in March 2016.

In addition to staging a host of social and educational events ranging from golf tournaments to tours of high-profile construction projects, the YCLC has taken a lead role in addressing some of the challenges facing young people working in construction today.

One of those challenges is tackling misconceptions about the younger generation.

“Some say young people don’t take initiative, but we don't see that a lot and many of the people that we deal with don't believe that to be true,” says Avree Bujaczek, Chair of the YCLC. “We want people to know that we're looking at it and we're talking about it.” The topic of taking initiative was front and centre at a YCLC workshop, Finding the Leader in You, held in September 2017 that featured speakers offering their own experiences and a group discussion on the subject. Bujaczek, who works as a field co-ordinator for PCL Construction, says educational events like this provide encouragement for young people in the construction field who are striving to take control of their own careers. “We want to show that you can step up and put yourself out there and make a change, no matter what position you are in. Leaders don't have to be managers,” she says. 

Bujaczek agrees that helping bridge the divide that sometimes exist between on-site and office construction staff is a worthwhile goal. "It is important because communication is a huge part of everyone's job in construction every day,” she says. “We're all a team and we all need to help each other get to the end goal, so that's really an important part of what we're looking at.” Fostering communication between the younger and older generations in Calgary’s construction community is another key objective for the YCLC. The group was formed in part to help young professionals tap into the wealth of experience shared by leaders from the baby boom generation, who continue to retire in growing numbers in recent years. Some of past high-points for the YCLC include arranging site tours of prominent construction sites around the city, including The City of Calgary’s Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility, the New Central Library, and the Schulich School of Engineering renovation and expansion project.

Another major highlight are the events held by the YCL. Upcoming events include the YCL XWarrior Challenge May 12 (Tickets here) and the second part of the YCL Leadership Series will take place May 24.

For more information YCLC, go to www.yclcalgary.com or follow them on Twitter and Instagram @YCL_Calgary.

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