Engineering The Future

Engineering The Future

At Milford High School & Applied Technology Center (ATC), educational experiences in Engineering has opened up possibilities for several students, including junior Veronica Sillerico and senior Matthew Hannon.

“I took Engineering Design to get a better idea of what a career in engineering would be like in my first year of high school,” said Sillerico.

She also participated in the school’s Manufacturing and Externship Program in which three companies–Spraying System, Alene Candles, and Hitchner–work collaboratively to engage students in both educational and working environments.

“I plan to take the Externship Program for next semester,” added Sillerico, who said program at ATC attracted the attention of Congresswoman Annie Kuster last year.

“She visited the school and spoke with students, teachers, the companies involved, and four ambassadors to speak with her at a roundtable discussion, myself included,” she said. “After the meeting, I asked the Vice President of Spraying Systems if I could take a summer internship at the company, which he accepted.”

Sillerico noted she had “a remarkable experience there,” which has led her to seriously consider pursuing a Mechanical Engineering or Computer Programming career.

For Hannon, his aspiration is to earn a degree in Mechanical Engineering. Although he plans to attend Virginia Tech, he has also been accepted at Norwich University and SNHU. 

“For a long time, I was looking into aerospace/aeronautical engineering but thought that Mechanical was broad enough that I could apply it to many different fields,” he explained. “I feel that I gained a lot of experience in Mechanical Engineering through the Robotics class I took sophomore year.”

This class, he said, incorporated a lot of problem solving and technical skills that helped intensify his interest in the subject.

“One of my favorite projects was this ‘Crain Robot’ that me and my partner, Jack Vogel, had to build in Robotics,” he said. “I thought it was one of the more difficult robots to build and code and therefore was, in my opinion, the most fun to build.”

Aside from her work in school, Sillerico has pursued other pathways, one of which includes her recent acceptance to BAE’s Women in Technology Program.

“I also wrote an ELO ad campaign developed by Cookson Communication for a Work Based Learning event at Manchester Community College,” she added.

In looking ahead to the future, Hannon said his experience at ATC has helped him appreciate an important concept.

“Failing is going be a part of the learning process,” he said. “Honestly, it makes succeeding all the more amazing when it finally happens.”

Sillerico added, “In this program, I have met new people and learned new ideas and acquired soft skills that I believe impact me as a person and eventually will bring forth greater opportunities.”

10th Annual NH Construction Career Days

10th Annual NH Construction Career Days

This year’s Construction Career Days are scheduled for September 27th and 28th from 8:30-12:30.  It will be held at the Hillsborough County Youth Center Foundation in New Boston, NH.  New Hampshire Construction Career Days (NHCCD) exposes New Hampshire high school students to possible career paths in both the construction and transportation industries through a hands-on exhibits and educational resources.  Labor unions, construction companies, school districts, state agencies, trade and professional organizations collaborate to provide the students with an introduction to various aspects of construction.

This event increases career awareness in the construction and transportation industries through hands-on experience with heavy equipment, welding, small tools, plumbing, electrical wiring, surveying, waste water management, bridge construction, land clearing, underground utilities, and other construction related jobs.  Several secondary educational resources and career training pathways are available for students to learn about.  Professionals from a wide array of construction related work are available to speak with students and answer questions about their experiences in the construction industry and why they are so passionate about their career.

The day is open to all high school students, both male and female, via registration through a participating school.  In fact, one of the goals of this event is to Increase the attendance of women and minorities participating in this event to a target attendance of 25%.  Last year we were able to reach out to just over 14% females and 21% minorities.

Information & Registration

Future Looks Bright for Construction

Future Looks Bright for Construction

On Thursday, October 26, hundreds of business owners, architects, contractors and others are expected to attend the Annual “Excellence in Construction” Awards, presented by the Associated Builders and Contractors, New Hampshire/Vermont Chapter (ABCNHVT).

At the event in which there are seats for 50 teachers and students at no charge, ABCNHVT’s Jennifer Landon said the purpose behind it is threefold.

“It’s an opportunity to promote our industry, improve our image, and communicate to the public about the importance of the construction industry and the value construction professionals provide to our economy and all of society,” she said.

For ABCNHVT’s new president Josh Reap, the event highlights construction industry needs.

“The mounting shortage of skilled construction workers has acted as a drag on the ability to get things done,” he said. “Every contractor I talk to says their biggest problem is finding people and that is backed up by the statistic that we have the nation’s fourth lowest construction-related unemployment rate. The average age of a New Hampshire construction worker is 45, so anyone entering the industry now will find years of stable employment.”

In discussing the role of ABCNHVT, he said a big part of what they do is forge partnerships with local schools and industry allies “to get the word out” about the need for people in the construction industry today. He said part of their job as an agency is to create opportunities for career professionals to tell their story to students about what it is like in construction and how it has provided both opportunity and a pathwnay to a good life.

“There are presently 500,000 jobs that are ready to be filled right now in the American construction industry,” he added.

In hosting the event on October 26, Reap said it is an opportunity for them to recognize the outstanding projects of the year among ABCNHVT membership. He said the event also serves to help invited high school students and CTE professionals learn more about careers in construction.

“We will have a special feature on Careers in Construction to raise awareness of the opportunities that exist for those individuals that want to work with their hands and minds,” he explained. “As the leading representative of the industry, ABC works to promote careers in construction with a focus on building the individual to reach their fullest potential.”

In looking ahead, Reap said he hopes the work performed by ABC as a whole can help to disentangle pervasive myths about the construction industry.

According to Reap, there are many myths and misinformation that surround the construction industry that prevent many students from pursuing a career in it.

“Construction is a pathway to the middle class that doesn’t carry mountains of student loan debt,” he said. “Today’s construction worker is highly skilled and has the potential to earn a great paycheck.”

He cited for the average yearly salary for a Pipefitter in New Hampshire as one example.

“The annual average salary is around $61,000—and the training is often paid for by the employer, who puts the student through a craft course or apprenticeship program,” he said. “Construction today involves a lot of cutting edge technology and math, which is a far cry from the image of a dirty low wage job people sometimes still think when they thought of construction.”

To learn more about the Associated Builders and Contractors, New Hampshire/Vermont, visit

Tiny Houses at SST a Big Hit!

Tiny Houses at SST a Big Hit!

Four CTE centers in New Hampshire are joining the tiny house movement. Tiny House New Hampshire is a workforce development program designed to encourage students from career technical centers to consider the construction trades industry. Four schools around the state are taking part in the program. The other schools are Huot Technical Center in the Lakes Region, Kennett High School in North Conway and Alvirne High School in Hudson. The houses will compete against each other in March.

full Seacoast Online article