Building a Strong Foundation for a Career in Construction
smiling man wearing construction safety helmet and sunglasses

Laying the groundwork for a fulfilling and successful career in the construction industry

A strong foundation is essential in the construction industry for multiple reasons, both metaphorically and literally. Laying the groundwork for a long and rewarding career in the industry might take a little time but once it’s properly done, the sky is the limit. Building a foundation for a lasting and fulfilling career in construction requires a combination of education, skills, experience, and professional development.

How do I get started?

One of the best ways to build a strong foundation for your construction career is through education. Traditional two and four-year college degrees in fields like construction management, engineering, and architecture, are a great option and can be helpful when you pursue management or leadership roles.

For most entry-level positions, companies offer journeyman apprenticeships and mentorships to teach you the industry with on-the-job training, helping you develop carpentry, welding, electrical work, and even project management skills.

College students working at their computers

Create your own career path

While having a degree related to the construction field can be beneficial, Mortenson has many people who have degrees in other fields like Finance, Political Science, Real Estate, and even Art History as well as many people who don’t have formal degrees. Mortenson offers apprenticeships so you can learn on the job, as well as positions with growth opportunities that require equivalent experience to a degree, because we believe there is a leader in everyone, no matter what their background is.

Our inclusive culture encourages individuality, and every person is part of the innovation Mortenson brings to the construction industry. Mortenson team members continue to bring their authentic selves to work every day and the shared value of Inspire What's Possible is just one of the many reasons we remain one of the top 20 builders in the US.

Gaining construction experience

Whatever route you choose with your education, it's important to find opportunities to gain hands-on experience. Internships, entry-level jobs, even volunteering for projects in your community can help develop your skills and are great additions to your resume.

Programs like Habitat for Humanity are always looking for volunteers and are a great way to not only learn but make connections and network with others in the construction industry.

Professional development builds confidence

Finally, professional development is essential as you progress on your career path. Check with any potential or current employer to see what career development opportunities they have. For example, Mortenson offers continuing education, leadership tracks, and tuition reimbursement for team members.

By attending workshops, seminars, and conferences you connect and learn about construction industry trends. Technology, renewable energy, energy infrastructure, and even autonomous equipment in construction offer many certifications and licenses to stay relevant in an ever-changing job market. Growing your knowledge base only adds to your confidence and in turn your value as an employee.

Connections with others in the field

By investing in your education, developing your skills, gaining experience, and participating in professional development, you can build a successful career in construction.

More importantly, each of these creates connections with others who are in the field, and by connecting with others, you expand your professional network and open doors to new opportunities. Whether it’s a career in the construction industry, or building a brand-new NFL stadium, a strong foundation is essential for long-term success.