UW-Platteville hosts Construction Career Day and Construction Networking event

Hundreds of high school students from across the Midwest packed the University of Wisconsin-Platteville campus for the third annual Construction Career Day held on Oct. 6. The event featured nearly 300 students from 14 schools and dozens of construction companies. Construction Career Day gives ninth through 12th-grade students the opportunity to learn about careers within the construction industry.

“It was a huge day for the UW-Platteville Construction Management program,” said Gretchen Bockenhauer, lecturer and program coordinator. “We had over 30 sponsors from all different construction companies. Students participated in hands-on activities, went off-site, did hands-on labs and companies got to do hands-on activities with them.”

According to Bockenhauer, construction companies conducted a variety of hands-on activities and demonstrations including building a masonry wall, electrical wiring, nailing competition and welding virtually through simulators. Students also received the chance to tour Sesquicentennial Hall, led by Miron Construction, one of the sponsors of the event.

“My favorite part is getting to see the students interact with the companies and doing hands-on activities and seeing them light up with excitement,” said Bockenhauer. “It’s one of those things where students jump in and it’s like a lightbulb goes on and they say, ‘this is amazing. I want to do this.’”

As the day progressed, more than 200 UW-Platteville students majoring in construction management, construction safety management, and civil engineering had the opportunity to attend the Construction Networking event co-hosted by the Blue Book Building and Construction Network.

“It was great. We had over 42 companies who participated,” said Bockenhauer. “It was a social event for students, faculty, different construction companies to come and talk about what they do, job opportunities and answer questions in a more relaxed atmosphere.” 

Although it was a busy day on campus for the UW-Platteville Industrial Studies Department, Bockenhauer called it rewarding and very successful. She emphasized the importance of introducing high school students to the construction industry and connecting current college students to industry partners. 

“The construction industry is global. It’s a huge network and the more connections students have, the more opportunities they’ll be aware of,” said Bockenhauer. “There’s been amazing feedback. I have received several emails from [high] schools stating that they want to come back again. From our industry partners’ standpoint, they said it was great to share this with youth and were thankful for our networking event.”

The fourth annual Construction Career Day will take place on Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2022. For more information visit, www.uwplatt.edu/construction-day.

Bockenhauer gave a special thanks to Tower Crane and CG Schmidt for all their contributions throughout the event, as well as to all the sponsors who participated in the event and made the event possible.

Construction Career Day sponsors:

  • CG Schmidt 
  • ABC of Wisconsin
  • Hensel Phelps 
  • North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters 
  • BARD 
  • JP Cullen 
  • Corporate Contractors, Inc – CCI
  • Stevens Construction Corp.
  • Gronen
  • Miron Construction Co, Inc.
  • Conlon Construction Co. 
  • Pieper Electric, Inc. 
  • The Blue Book 
  • WDS Construction 
  • Daniels General Contractors 
  • Kraemer Brothers 
  • Integrity Grading and Excavating, Inc.
  • William Charles Construction Company, LLC
  • Staab Construction Corporation
  • Tri-North Builders
  • Wondra Construction 
  • Wisconsin Concrete Pavement Association 
  • Southwest Tech 
  • Portzen Construction 
  • Junior Achievement of the Heartland 


Construction Networking Event participants:

• The Blue Book Construction Network

• JP Cullen

• Hensel Phelps

• CG Schmidt

• Mathy Construction

• Stevens Construction Corp.

• Ahern

• William Charles

• Daniels General Contractors

• 1901, Inc.

• ABC of Wisconsin

• Staab Construction


• Horizon Retail

• Pieper Power

• Azco Inc.

• Sign Art

• Lincoln Contractor Supply

• CCI, Inc.

• Findorff

• Garney Construction

• Weaver Consultants Group

• WDS Construction, Inc

• Kraemer North America

• Lakeview Construction

• Northcentral Construction

• Integrity Grading & Excavating

• Walbec Group

• The Boson Company, Inc.

• Portzen Construction

• Supreme Structures

• Wondra Construction, Inc.

• Keller, Inc.

• BARD Materials

• Gronen Construction

• Miron Construction

• Conlon Construction

• Estes Construction

• Market & Johnson