This fall, NHTI, Concord’s Community College, will launch an innovative 3-semester program that will lead to a Building Inspector and Plans Examiner (BIPE) Certificate. According to Liaquat Khan, Department Head of NHTI’s Architectural Engineering Technology department, the program results from an extensive collaborative effort with BIPE industry personnel and other NHTO departments.
“The representatives of Building Inspectors’ industry approached us due to a looming shortage of skilled workers in their industry,” he said.
Tedd P. Evans, MCP, Chief Building Inspector for the City of Concord and one of the driving forces behind the program’s development, added, “We’re finding it difficult to attract younger people to the profession to replace them.”
In working to develop the program, which is unique in the state, Khan said they wanted to create something eminently practical. “The courses in the certificate program are aimed at developing students’ skills specific to the BIPE industry, which will prepare them to successfully enter the workforce,” he said.
As for its specific learning objectives, the 18-credit, six course program will prepare students to critically examine permit applications and plans for residential, commercial, and other building types. “This will subsequently ensure that the construction of building with permits is conducted in accordance and within the provisions of the relevant building codes,” Khan added. “Building inspectors and plans examiners play a critical role, as they review and inspect various building types from permit applications through construction phases to ensure they are healthy, safe, and structurally sound.”
According to Evans, who is also a board member of the NH Building Officials Association – the state chapter of the International Code Council (ICC), the program will assist a wide variety of people. “Many people now working as inspectors got into it mid-career like I did after working in the construction world,” he noted. “We had to learn on-the-job, though, because there was no place to get training, especially for things like construction law.”
He said the program will also benefit high school graduates without any construction experience. “It will place them at the top of the list for an inspector’s position,” he added, “because they would already have the theoretical knowledge required.”
For Khan, the program underscores the fundamental mission of NHTI as a whole. “NHTI works to ensure a pertinently educated workforce to serve New Hampshire needs,” he said. “Like all programs at NHTI, these courses will engage learners in a relatively rigorous way with attention to details, professionalism, and obligations.”
For anyone interested in learning more about the program, NHTI will hold an Information Session on Wednesday, June 10 at 6:00 pm. To RSVP, call (603) 230-4022, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.